A true MHM Activist

Trine Angeline Sig
Posted September 11, 2019 from Denmark
A true MHM activist
Please read an interesting blog post by My Period is Awesome (MPIA) featuring our dear Roisa Kerry - a true MHM activist. Roisa Kerry, Kenyan menstrual equity activist: “We need to make the young people custodians of SRHR”

Please read an interesting blog post by My Period is Awesome (MPIA) featuring our dear Roisa Kerry - a true MHM activist.

Roisa Kerry, Kenyan menstrual equity activist: “We need to make the young people custodians of SRHR”

Hi Roisa! Tell us about yourself and your work! My name is Roisa Kerry, I am a public health practitioner with a focus on water, sanitation and hygiene. I am advocating for sustainable options and innovation through sanitation marketing. Currently, I am the Director and Co-founder of ‘Live Healthy Initiatives’, which is a Kenyan based NGO focusing of reducing the incidences of lifestyle diseases such as cancer, diabetes and hypertension.

How did you get involved in the menstrual equity movement? I got involved in the menstrual movement because I really love addressing gender disparity issues and girls and women's dignity. I used to give general health talks in school on sexual & reproductive health, teenage pregnancy issues, female genital mutilation and drugs/substance abuse. Along the way, I discovered my strength is in menstrual hygiene management and promoting sustainability by advocating for reusable menstrual products, menstrual cups and SafepadTM.

Tell us about life as a period-activist in Kenya! My life as a period activist has been really awesome because I love the feeling I get when I am able to make young girls smile, when I can give some hope and when the impact of my work on girls and young women motivates me to strive to do more.

Also it is very challenging because I am not able to meet my audience's need, this breaks my heart when I see how broken the girls are, when I can pass that menstrual hygiene information but not able to provide pads to them, it really makes me sad. I feel broken when those people who trust me cannot get the help they need. It hurts most when a male teacher calls me asking for pads for his pupils or students but I am unable to give them, it also pains me when teachers or partners request for a training or support and am not able to provide because its either I can't afford to travel to their areas or I am not able to donate pads, panties or the ‘dignity kits’ to them.

What is most needed in terms of SRHR in your setting? In terms of Sexual Reproductive Health & Rights, we need age-appropriate information and safe spaces for the young people. We need to make the young people custodian of SRHR, they need to be part of decision making process and implementation, effective sexual education will lead to age appropriate, culturally relevant and scientifically accurate information. It includes structured opportunities for young people to explore their attitudes and values and have skills that will help them make informed decisions about their sexuality.

What is your best memory from your work with menstrual equity? My best memory in my menstrual hygiene work is having all stakeholders involved in breaking stigma, myths and taboos surrounding menstrual blood. I feel happy when Maasai men take lead to demystify menstrual inequality and call a spade a spade for the sake of advocating for girl child's dignity and keeping girls in school.

https://www.myperiodisawesome.com/blog/roisa-kerry-menstrual-equity-acti...

This story was submitted in response to GirlForce: Unscripted and Unstoppable.

Comments 10

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Lisbeth
Sep 11
Sep 11

Wow that is a lovely post or share story of Rosa. Does she work with RR and Safe pads in Kenya? Has she help you and RR to bring safe pad in Kenya, amazing.
Thanks for sharing.
Regards

Trine Angeline Sig
Sep 11
Sep 11

Roisa is working with a local organisation called LHI :-) Both her and the organisations has been very supportive towards SafepadTM.

Lisbeth
Sep 12
Sep 12

Splendid! :-)

Beth Lacey
Sep 12
Sep 12

Very interesting. Thank you

Hello, Trine,

What an inspiring and empowering post! Thank you for sharing this interview with Roisa Kerry. I hope she can join us here on World Pulse. :)

Trine Angeline Sig
Sep 12
Sep 12

Yes, we should get her onboard - she is a true sweetheart, working hard to make a difference!

That would be great, Trine! World Pulse is ready to welcome her when she does. Thank you for introducing her to us. :)

Anjana Vaidya
Sep 13
Sep 13

Dear Trine
thank you for sharing the interview of Roisa, its so good know her and her work on menstrual hygiene management. I wish someday the sanitary pads or cups can be easily accessible to every girl in need.
Best regards,
anjana

Trine Angeline Sig
Sep 13
Sep 13

That is also my wish... no girl should be prevented from doing what she wants to do because of her period.

Anita Shrestha
Sep 14
Sep 14

Dear Trine
Thank you for sharing story. Keep it continue.