Sustainable Sanitation Initiatives- Bank of America

Menstrual Hygiene Education for adolescent girls in schools.

Bank of America With the aim of providing awareness on safe drinking water, sanitation facilities and imparting MHM education, personal hygiene and hand washing techniques and nutrition awareness, a healthy women’s’ society could be ensured that would lead overall improvement of the communities is supporting Gramalaya on Sustainable Sanitation Initiatives through WASH, MHM and Nutrition. It was proposed to undertake an integrated WASH, MHM and Nutrition program for women and adolescent girls in Ariyankuppam block and 79 urban wards of Puducherry District. Through this project, the health of women would be improved; environmental sanitation of the village communities would be maintained. The Efforts of Sustainable sanitation initiatives were reflected in the behavior of people.

A three day MHM orientation training was conducted to the Health Educators at Kolakudipatti with resource persons within and outside and from Ecofemme Pondicherry. The first girls friendly toilet complex with incinerator was opened at Valadi Government Higher Secondary School, today when Ms.Jual D'Souza Days, of Dasra cut the ribbon. Mr.S.Damodaran, founder of Gramalaya said that it was the prestigious and innovative project launched for educating the adolescent girls and through them entire community on MHM and other personal Hygiene behaviours. Under the programme about 3700 Adolescent girls in the schools and through them, 7000 women in the community will benefit. This would greatly improve the health and hygiene of the girls and women in rural areas.

During the MHM orientation programme the health educators advised the students to convey basic principles of MHM to their mothers, relatives and students of other schools living in the village.


  • Open defecation was reduced and people are using the toilets
  • The unused toilets are now in the condition of usage after hygiene education
  • People prefer the SMART toilets for the facilities of bathing, washing, hand washing and more
  • Toilet beneficiaries are keeping hand washing soap / liquid inside the toilet and they are following hand washing after using toilets
  • Most of the bathrooms’ waste water is now linked to the kitchen garden.
  • School students are educating their parents, sisters and relatives on personal hygiene behaviours.
  • School teachers and authorities are supporting to Gramalaya and helping to
  • Good MHM practices are following by women and adolescent girls.
  • Teachers are also educating the students on MHM with the help of training provided by Gramalaya.
  • All Toilets constructed under this project are SMART toilets which are being consistently used by the beneficiaries.
  • Hygiene Education to all villagers have been provided by staff which created major changes in their health and hygiene habits
  • Women and adolescent girls are now talking freely about menstruation without any hesitation. The myths and misconceptions about menstruation among women and adolescent girls were now made clear.

Reaching out the community:

In municipality of Puducherry, women were given orientation on cloth pad usage for Menstrual Hygiene Management and reducing the solid waste menace on the streets and drainages. A commercial sanitary napkin will take 500 – 800 years to decompose while the reusable cloth pads made out of cotton cloth are economically cheaper, washable, reusable and degradable within few months. The usage of menstrual cloth pads not only make them feel free about the menstruation but also adolescent girls and women benefited and prevent rashes and irritation and other health related problems and make them proud without facing the monthly menstruation a nightmare.