Twinkle Khanna on the importance of menstrual health and hygiene
Challenging stereotypes, one period at a time
Author, columnist, film producer and now activist — Twinkle Khanna plays many parts, with inspiring ease. The multi-hyphenate has joined hands with Save The Children foundation to champion the cause of adolescent health and menstrual hygiene for girls in Mumbai’s slums.
“20 per cent of all school girls drop out when they hit puberty and this is because of the shame that surrounds menstruation and the fact that low-cost sanitary pads are not easily accessible to them,” says Twinkle. As the artist ambassador, she hopes to amplify young voices from local slums like Govandi, while also attempting to change stereotypical mindsets.
“50 per cent of women living in rural areas today are still using unhygienic methods during their periods. This foundation gives me a chance to catch girls when they’re really young which means the impact both on health and literacy is amplified,” says Twinkle.
With Save The Children, Twinkle plans to work with young girls as well as boys from slum communities and educate them on the importance of menstrual health and hygiene. “There are many taboos that we are looking to dispel, like the fact that menstruation is unhealthy and that one needs to be secluded, one can’t enter temples, can’t have baths… these are all issues we need to eradicate,” says Twinkle.
“The one tip I have for all women out there is that we should not let our biology hinder us in any way,” Twinkle adds.