Monowara is a tailor and changemaker for her community!

Meet Monowara Begum, a single mother of two and entrepreneur from Bangladesh.

Through donors’ generous support, she was able to connect with iDE and got the education and training she needed to build a successful tailoring business.

In her own words: “Now, I can take care of my family’s needs and send my children to school.”

She decided to sew and sell reusable period pads because disposable ones were difficult to find in her community. This lack of access is an example of period poverty. All around the world, women, girls and others who menstruate miss out on multiple days of work and school every month due to period poverty.

In addition to earning enough income to support her family, Monowara works to eliminate period poverty for girls in her community by providing education on menstrual health. She also stocks a vending machine at their school with low-cost disposable pads.

Previously, these girls had to purchase period products from the store (which is uncomfortable when staff and other shoppers are male) or use old clothes for absorbency (which can be a health-risk).

Now, girls have cheap and convenient access to the period products they need so they can focus on their education.

This is one solution in one community in Bangladesh. iDE is partnering with more communities, researchers, and innovators around the world working on solutions to period poverty for their communities.

Read more of Monowara’s story here.

Watch a 5 minute video about the pad vending machine here.