Sehera offers 6624 girls fresh hope
Johannesburg-based Sehera Bisnath has been preparing for her 16th birthday for a long time, but not for the reasons one may think. Sehera does not want the glamorous princess party. Instead she wants to conquer a feat that is to hike to the peak of Mount Kilimangaro and in turn, the sponsorship from this would help provide 6624 young girls with the necessity of sanitary pads.
Sehera is fortunate enough to attend one of the top private schools in the country, but is sensible enough at her age to understand that not all share her good fortune. She grew up in a home where the values of caring for the less fortunate is the norm and when she became aware of the plight of the number of young girls who have no access to something as basic as sanitary wear, she decided to tackle the very tough summit to the tip of Mount Kilimanjaro.
She understands that entering womanhood should be a time of joy and celebration, and not a time of shame and pain, and that not having sanitary wear is a societal issue which affects young ladies on so many levels such as life choices, their futures, and education. A mammoth campaign like this cannot be undertaken on her own and so she has decided to team up with the Nelson Mandela Foundation, the Empire Partner Foundation and Dignity Dreams. The endeavour has come to be known as the #Sweet16summit campaign.
When the Nelson Mandela Foundation became aware of Sehera’s reasons for summiting Mount Kilimanjaro they had no hesitation to fully endorse and support the #Sweet16Summit campaign. Their team will be led by Yase Godlo who id the manager of Mandela Day and Outreach.
Yashmikha Govender, director of Empire Partner Foundation (EPF ), was also all too keen to support the initative. “Our organisation’s health project is dedicated to bringing menstrual dignity to young disadvantaged girls which is why we are supporting the #Sweet16Summit campaign,” she said.
When the founder of Dignity Dreams, Sandra Millar, became aware that too many young girls was being humiliated every single month because they were using socks filled with sand, newspaper and toilet paper during their menstrual cycle she was determined to find a sustainable solution to this situation. Dignity Dreams has been elected by Sehera Bisnath as the beneficiary of her journey to the roof of Africa and together with the team we have made up the following pack, which consists of 6 washable, SABS absorbency approved pads, 3 pairs of panties, 9 Ziploc bags for soiled goods, a multi-lingual instruction sheet and an A6 MyBodyNoShame, menstrual health education booklet. The pack is valued at R239.98.
“We are aware that myths and stigmas are firmly entrenched in communities and must be dealt with in a very sensitive and culturally acceptable manner. Our #MyBodyNoShame” booklet will go a long way to assist the young girls, moms, dads, peers, educators and community workers. We’d like to nurture 6,624 young girls by giving them a gift that will make their journey to womanhood a celebration, but to make this possible we need your generous financial support. We are willing to assist you with any fundraising events you would like to plan or to make presentations to your companies and CEOs,” Millar said. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact 012 430 2630.