The world that I hope to see.
My name is Lameck Kiula, in August 2015 I joined Raleigh Tanzania as a Team Leader leading and coordinating 14 multicultural young people from Tanzania and UK to implement WASH Project in two communities of Njombe, Tanzania. The experience was vital, and it has changed me as a person and my career. Since there I dedicated my career in supporting young girls living in rural communities as contributing back to the society.
The experience was dynamic as I wanted to continue being an active citizen by putting more effort on menstruation education. In rural communities, for example where I live in Kagera, many girls and people with disabilities drop out of school due to poor knowledge, infrastructure and system that do not support them during menstruation. Adolescent girls in many places have no access to information and knowledge about menstrual hygiene, boys are not even involved with the topic due to taboos and that create a boundary and make it even worse for girls when having their period during school hours.
Seeing this as a challenge in my society I began to imagine the world that I want, the world which has gender equality and equal opportunities for both boys, girls, and people with disabilities. That brough me to well know Campaign #MmiNaKagera #HedhiSiAibu which means “I and Kagera” “Menstruation is not a shame”. This campaign is implemented physically and online with the goal to break the silence and get boys/men involved in the topic as well as to support sanitary towels to the girls in the rural areas and girls with disability.
Lameck continue by saying “We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give”. Winston S. Churchill . I seek people to support this campaign due to the following reasons.
- Women and girls with disability may be less likely to gather information about relevant topic by themselve
- Existing information materials does not include relevant aspects for women and girls with different disability or does not cater for different learning requirements.
- WASH infrastructure may not cater for different impairment
- Maintaining hygiene (changing materials personal and washing) can be challenging for some people especially with limited physical abilities.
- Menstruating girls with disabilities might face further discrimination and stigma”
#MimiNaKagera #Hedhisiaibu campaign has been able to meet three school in Rural Karagwe District in Kagera and two inclusive schools in Bukoba Municipal that gave us a total of 338 children reached while the online platforms Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn we have a minimum of 30,000 people reached through sharing educational posts about menstrual hygiene on the social media.
This was a dream come true for me, working with both Raleigh Tanzania as an alumni, Jambo Bukoba and Jambo for Development has been a huge support towards my achievements and what am doing at the moment as well as it has contributed to who I am and my career development.
My goal is to reach more men in Tanzania to join and support this campaign by motivating and educating them on health and hygiene, growth and puberty, menstrual cycle, STIs and gender equality. All this aiming to support and to transform their mind towards menstrual issues, with the target of at least the outreach of 20 primary schools for the year 2020/2021 in Kagera region.
If you wish to support this amazing work done by Lameck please follow the campaign progress through his social medias which goes by the name Lameck Kiula.