Campaign Update

What Is Menstrual Hygiene Education In A Village That Has Lived Without Electricity For 20 Years in India: The Reality of Ukhrul in Manipur

Urmila Chanam
Posted June 5, 2018 from India
Women from the village assemble with excitement when they learnt the workshop is on menstrual hygiene
Pathetic roads and no electricity since 20 years has made this village in Manipur live in isolation from civilization (1/1)

This post comes from the grassroot work led by Breaking the Silence in Ukhrul district in India's northeastern state of Manipur and has been developed from the field diary with an aim to share experiences from the region inhabited by tribal community Tangkhul Naga.

Ukhrul, 27 May 2018

Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen, a village 65 km from Imphal city first got electricity 20 years ago in 1998 but the villagers enjoyed it only for a week and the electricity supply halted abruptly. Since 1998 this settlement with 150 households live in pitch darkness whether it be summer, winter or monsoons. In the rainy season when the mud roads connecting the region to Imphal is slushy with mud and water posing danger to travelers on a vehicle or on foot, electricity would have helped a lot. The village elders and leaders have gone to the electricity department and district administration umpteenth times but no one from the department or government ever came to the village to repair. Just last month a team came to check what was the problem and came up with the explanation that the transformer was not working because people had not paid their electricity bill! Now villagers are unable to reason out a pending bill when they have never used any electricity in 20 years.

Breaking the Silence, a campaign that aims to educate communities on women's health with emphasis on facilities and infrastructure needed to achieve menstrual hygiene is now working in Ukhrul district. A community mass awareness program was conducted in the village community hall attended by more than 200 women and men, girls and boys, church and community leaders and senior citizens.

The sensitization workshop was gender inclusive because menstruation is not just a woman's issues it is everyone's issue. Additionally, men have a large role to play in ensuring procurement and use of hygienic material to absorb menstrual fluid, construction and use of toilets, supply of clean water and in busting age old myths and taboos that surround menstruation. Men form half the world just like women form the other half, making it nevessary for inclusion of men in programs that address women issues.

The senior age category men believed that menstruation is dirty and explained that the blood stains on clothes of girls and women are an unpleasant sight and looks gross. Other men expressed that there must be some wisdom to the customary laws observed with menstruating girls and women and it is not in the good interest of the community to defy these old customs.A retired headmaster of a government school said he will never agree that menstruation is not dirty and rationalised his statement on the basis of how filthy the blood smears look. Only a few men and women infact 25% believed that menstruation is not dirty or a disease and had basic idea of monthly natural phenomenon.

The training included discussing the local myths and practices, what Science says about menstruation, the harmful effects of propogating practices, a demonstration of different sanitary products and their safe disposal.

Founder Urmila Chanam said, ' Even if men do not menstruate they still have a role in discussions relates to menstruation because they are father, husband, brother, colleague and neighbors and knowledge will make them be supportive and encouraging to women's need.

The program was supported by the local woman society, Kabongram Baptist Church and Village Authority Chairman Shri K.B Son. Breaking the Silence team included Urmila Chanam, Silvia Rimai and Agui Kamei.

 

Ukhrul, 28 May 2018

On the occasion of International Menstrual Hygiene Day when the rest of the world was focussed on raising awareness about the challenges women face during their menstruation, in remote hills of Manipur in Ukhrul's Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen a village 65 kms from Imphal, Breaking the Silence conducted an awareness programfor students studying in Tangkhul Khullen Government High School for adolescent girls and celebrated the significant day where girls took a pledge to end the shame associated with menstruation and speak up to help friends, sisters, others in the community.

The campaign which traveled the length and breadth of Manipur's three hill districts of Noney, Tamenglong and Ukhrul conducted workshops on menstrual hygiene not just for girls and women but for boys and men and entire community with an aim to build a supportive environment for girls and women. Besides the initiative also studied the infrastructure and facilities needed for menstrual hygiene.

Villagers,community leaders, teachers, old women shared their daily struggle to secure basic amenities like electricity and what it is to live without power for 20 years and not have anyone come to repair. A woman said,' Its not like they can't do it. They just don't care! Because we live far from Imphal or district headquarters Ukhrul does not mean we don't exist!' The students say they have never been taught about menstruation by their mothers and most of them said they use cloth mostly. The Primary Health Center of this area got burnt down way back in 1979 and the 150 household strong village inhabited by Tangkhuls of Manipur do not have any health facility available to them. The common thread here from this village in Ukhrul is both the electricity not working and getting repaired since 1998 and the Primary Health Center never being reconstructed sinve 1979.Breaking the Silence 2018 Manipur Campaign came to and end and will consolidate its findings to share with the government of India. Its primary recommendation will include electricity, roads, transportation, functional primary health center, availability and affordability of hygienic sanitary material and clean water supply in villages in Noney, Tamenglong and Ukhrul.

For any query or discussion you can reach me at urmila.chanam@gmail.com or urmila.chanam@yahoo.com

Visit our website at http://breakingthesilencereddroplets.com/

Note: This article was published in the People's Chronicle the largest English newspaper in Manipur state in India and Youth Ki Awaaz India's largest youth platform and was developed as a recommendation to the Government of India and Government of Manipur from the field experience of Breaking the Silence, a campaign focused on educating girls and women on menstrual hygiene and health.

 

How many people have you impacted since your last update?

800

Comments 39

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Jill Langhus
Jun 06, 2018
Jun 06, 2018

Hi Urmila. Thanks for sharing your diary update on your visit to the Ukhrul district. I really like the top photo and the fact that the women were excited to see you talk about menstrual hygiene. Why do you think the myth of "dirtiness" is perpetuated throughout the world? What did you say to all of these people that were adamant that menstruation is dirty?

Urmila Chanam
Jun 07, 2018
Jun 07, 2018

My dear sister in the heart of purity and impurity lies a shrewd goal to keep women subjugated and control. Its a patriarchal mechanism of control over females. What is ad is girls grow up believing they are second class citizens and a burden to their families. 

Love and hugs,

Urmila Chanam,

India

urmila.chanam@yahoo.com

Jill Langhus
Jun 07, 2018
Jun 07, 2018

Yes, well, it certainly does seem that way. I'd like to think that old paradigm is shifting, however, though. Maybe in some areas it will take longer to improve the situation for girls and women, but I would like to think that it can and will happen. Do you agree? Are you seeing a shift at all in your country?

Urmila Chanam
Jun 07, 2018
Jun 07, 2018

You know sister, people are relocating to cities in search for jobs and interacting and living with educated and empowered men and women. When they go back to their homes and community they take those values back and that is one source of change I am witnessing. 

Much love

Urmila Chanam

Jill Langhus
Jun 09, 2018
Jun 09, 2018

Yay!!! Well, thank God for that!!! Great to hear.

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Jill,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

Jill Langhus
Sep 26, 2018
Sep 26, 2018

Oh, wow! Great job! That's awesome news. Keep up the good work, and thanks for sharing your update!!

Karen QuiƱones-Axalan
Jun 06, 2018
Jun 06, 2018

Hello, Urmila,

I love that you keep us updated on this project. I am glad that World Pulse makes this space available for you to journal your activities. This is a way of immortalizing the baby steps you initiate in Manipur. The next generations will be able to read these humble revolutionary beginnings. I am excited where this campaign will take you and the women in India. Congrats always!

This statement is eye-opening, "menstruation is not just a woman's issues it is everyone's issue". Yes, it is! Men should be as involved as the women. It is sad that there are still men who thinks menstrual blood is dirty. It is part of a biological cycle. Are they saying the blood that comes with a newborn child is dirty as well? 

I salute you as always. You are so productive in both online and offline spaces. 

Urmila Chanam
Jun 07, 2018
Jun 07, 2018

World Pulse listens to every woman who is a part of our global family. Where else are we heard??? While there are many social justice issues in different parts of the world, at the base of it lies inequality and gender based violence and gender inequality have several demons surfacing with a different symptom. Many young men and women come to meet me in my office and home and most of the times, they do not know how to begin their work around a cause they are passionate about and I share what World Pulse has taught me over the years. To voice our opinion, challenges, how we overcame them is a great beginning. Thank you for reading my post my sister and your love I value them.

Love always

Urmila Chanam,

India

urmila.chanam@yahoo.com

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Karen,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

Tarke Edith
Jun 07, 2018
Jun 07, 2018

Hi Ulsmila you are a courageous woman keep on persisting the government of India must one day hear you thanks sis

Urmila Chanam
Jun 07, 2018
Jun 07, 2018

My soul sister from World Pulse, let us continue to share our individual paths, learn from each other and strengthen each other. Love from India, Urmila Chanam urmila.chanam@yahoo.com

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Tarke,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

Tarke Edith
Sep 30, 2018
Sep 30, 2018

Hi Urmila,

Thanks be to God the voices of women are been heard in the society today. You see, your effort has yielded fruits.

Ndimofor Aretas
Jun 07, 2018
Jun 07, 2018

Dear Urmila,  thank you for the updates on the wonderful work you are doing for the inhabitants of Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen.  I was really touched by the mindset of the men especially the "obstinate" retired headmaster because it clarifies why most of the women in the community have little knowledge about how to properly handle menstruation issues for their daughters.  I am happy you and your team took out the time to educated both the men and the boys about their relationship to menstruation even though they don't menstruate.  If the girls have been using clothes in place of pads all this while and have not used the right sanitary pads, have they suffered any health issues related to that?

Urmila Chanam
Jun 07, 2018
Jun 07, 2018

Dear Ndimofor Aretas,

Greetings from India! I am so happy to read your comment and to see you join us in World Pulse. So thank you.

The male headmaster in the village endorsed all the patriarchal values of purity and impurity during periods that we find in our society in India making girls and women believe they are second class human beings that robs them of their self worth and confidence. He believed it that way perhaps because he was taught in his childhood and in his married life. I noticed he is caring for the girl students and gives them empathy when  they want to go home during periods or are absent from school. He also likes to talk to boy students about matters related to the changes in their bodies as they grow up. He said frankness is key for any teacher to form communication with adolescent students which is all very good. If this man and other men/women who are helping by nature but have grown up believing in wrong things, are persuaded to understand truth, they can be effective advocates in their community. The girls and women using cloth said they suffer from itchiness and excessive white discharge. We are yet to ascertain if the cause is cloth use. Keep writing and keep discussing I have enjoyed this so much.

Love and prayers,

Urmila Chanam,

India

urmila.chanam@yahoo.com

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Ndimofor,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

nelsa nabila
Jun 08, 2018
Jun 08, 2018

Hi Ursula. 

Thank you for sharing this amazing piece of work carried in Ukhrul. Many women probably have been going through alot trying to handle themselves during menstruation and even trying to stay strong despite the ongoing taboos. It so much impacting that u could touch so many lives especially concerning Mentrual hygiene which is being neglected . Even with no electricity and good roads. That's amazing keep on impacting. 

Keep up with the good work.

Our support is with you sister.

Urmila Chanam
Jun 09, 2018
Jun 09, 2018

Sister Ursula, one man recently exclaimed that menstrual hygiene is no big deal because India has more urgent and bigger problems of rape, dowry and honor killings. I reflected a lot over what he had said to find truth in them but at last, I decided that that was not right. Why should we rise only at the instance of disease, death, murder or rape? We should focus on preventive community medicine and health care and on safety and empowerment and not just court room justice. If menstrual hygiene, self care, development, education and happiness becomes the goals we will overcome issues that saturate our newspapers daily. Thank you my sister for your support.

Love

Urmila Chanam

India

urmila.chanam@yahoo.com

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Nelsa,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

Obisakin Busayo
Jun 09, 2018
Jun 09, 2018

Dear Urmila

Well done my sister! Thank you for sharing this wonderful update of your work with us. Keep up the good work and the Lord is your strength

Love

Busayo

Urmila Chanam
Jun 09, 2018
Jun 09, 2018

Sister, Busayo I love you xoxo

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Busayo,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

Adanna
Jun 12, 2018
Jun 12, 2018

Dear Urmila,

Thank you for sharing your story and experiences with us.

I like how you also include the boys and men in your campaign. This is really nice and will create a very supportive environment.

Well done my sister, and keep shinning.

Love,

Adanna 

Urmila Chanam
Jun 12, 2018
Jun 12, 2018

Adanna, as you rightly pointed out, the dialogue is incomplete till boys and men are included and why just them, the entire community and environment of girls and women like their school, work place, transit stations, hostels etc. The danger of focusing on all girls program is further isolation of girls and women in our society which can never be a solution. Thanks for reading my article sister and wishing you all the best in your endeavors.

Much love always,

Urmila Chanam,

India

urmila.chanam@yahoo.com

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Adanna,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

Adanna
Sep 26, 2018
Sep 26, 2018

This is good news indeed!

Well done for all your work Urmila.

You are a star.

Love,

Adanna

Beth Lacey
Jun 13, 2018
Jun 13, 2018

Such important work

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Beth,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

coolasas
Jun 13, 2018
Jun 13, 2018

Thank you, Urmila for the updates. You're making wonderful work for the girls in India and hopefully, it continues to make strides to get the message to a wider audience. 

Good luck and the forces of women are with you :) 

Coolasas

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear sister,

There has been an important development in the village mentioned in this post.The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

In solidarity,

Urmila Chanam,

India

angelam28
Jun 15, 2018
Jun 15, 2018

Urmila, I found it interesting that the men's perspective is menstruation is dirty because of the blood smears etc. I think the part they failed to recognize is that if they feel that way then surely the women do too. So if we can all agree that not caring for ones self during menstruation is unpleasant and dirty than surely they can agree that it would be much more preferable to support the women in obtaining materials and facilities needed to handle the monthly cycle in a clean hygienic manner. Keep up your good work spreading this valuable message.

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Angelam,

Thank you for your input and thoughts. They make absolute sense. I hope to use it in persuading the men to believe how they have a role in ensuring availability, accessibility and affordability of hygienic sanitary materials.

There has been a development in the village mentioned in this post.

The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

It is an ongoing effort, inch by inch we will move ahead.

Love 

Urmila Chanam

India

Tamarack Verrall
Jun 23, 2018
Jun 23, 2018

My dear Sister,

Dear Urmila,

I have had the great fortune to follow your work on Menstrual Hygiene and Ending the Silence for some years now. You are an inspiration on how to create a movement against great odds. This latest news of all that the people in this village have been facing, and your opening the lid on old ways of thinking about menstruation show how profound your work continues to be. The connections you are forging with your Government, the inclusion of all in the community in opening meetings, the meetings where girls are free to speak...you are such a fierce and wise leader. How great that this was broadcast in your country's news, and that you have created a pathway to your Government to press for all the changes needed. "A community mass awareness program will consolidate its findings to share with the government of India. Its primary recommendation will include electricity, roads, transportation, functional primary health center, availability and affordability of hygienic sanitary material and clean water supply in villages in Noney, Tamenglong and Ukhrul". Such change making work, dear Sister. You inspire me constantly.

With love in Sisterhood,

Tam

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear precious Tam,

I have read your message only now owing to my travel and activities. I am so happy to read through them and tears flow down my face to reflect on your message. Yes indeed we have been together sharing our journeys with each other and that's what the world is now wakening up to- partnerships and coalitions when World Pulse has led it for almost a decade now.

I have a good news to share with you: from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) mentioned in this post where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on WASH and gives recommendation to the government for action.

Its time for celebrating sister. The village chieftan's family has called me on the phone to share about their joy and said words cannot convey what their happiness is now. They have also invited me to visit them to celebrate together and I plan to go in November this year.

Much love always,

Urmila Chanam,

India

annadassa
Jul 03, 2018
Jul 03, 2018

Urmila,

What an awesome work you are doing for the community of Ukhrul!! Thank you so much for sharing the great work you are doing. It is not good to live under shame because of the menstruation cycle..! 

Great work,

Annadasa

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear Annadasa,

I am happy to share a good news with you, sister!

The good news is from  this village Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tangkhul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on WASH and gives recommendation to the government for action.

Step by step we will conquer, step by step we will move to hope.

Love always,

Urmila Chanam

Sherna Alexander Benjamin
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

My Sister,

You continue to motivate me. I am inspired by your work. I appreciate the sharing of your diary notes and shedding light on this most important issue and some of the factors which contribute to the challenges experienced by women and girls and men. The internal and the external challenges, the assumptions which guide attitudes and behaviours and the different ways women are oppressed. Keep pushing forward, keep striving keep moving , for change will come. 

Urmila Chanam
Sep 25, 2018
Sep 25, 2018

Dear sister Sherna,

There are so many social issues in India and I know in the world that sometimes, we may get intimidated wondering where to begin from! What is the best is to begin with what you can do and forming coalitions. I have a good news to share with you following this diary notes.

The good news is from  this village in remote Manipur in India- Tangkhul Hungdung Khullen in Ukhrul district, Manipur state(India) where Breaking the Silence worked earlier in 2018 and which had no electricity for the past 20 years and Primary Health Center for last 37 years. 

As part of our advocacy efforts, we wrote about the plight of people without infrastructure through 3 newspaper articles in local newspaper. This was also presented at the India Law Conclave on 30th June 2018 in New Delhi, a national level policy platform. Following this, we met the head of state government of Manipur, honorable Chief Minister. Mr. N. Biren Singh in Imphal/Manipur and presented the facts. He acted upon it immediately and got a team to work on it on urgent basis. Finally, on 17th Sep 2018 the village received electricity. The dilapidated transformer has come to life after 20 years, giving hope to a community of Tanghul Naga tribe and 2500 persons.

Breaking the Silence raises awareness on menstrual hygiene management, assesses infrastructure and facilities on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and gives recommendation to the government for action.

Awareness and action are powerful approaches to address social evils step by step my sister, thats been my experience.

Amen.