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  • Writer's picturePad2Go Nepal

Pad2Go at UN Commission on the Status of Women : Panel Discussion

On the sidelines of the 68th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in New York City in March of 2024, Bachar Lorai, an international social impact agency, collaborated with the Journalist and Writer’s Foundation (JWF) and NGO CSW to organize a panel discussion entitled "Ending Period Poverty for South Asian Women & Girls." This event convened a varied panel of experts and practitioners to focus on menstrual health management (MHM) in the Indian Subcontinent, with the objective of facilitating a thorough conversation on the obstacles, insights gained, and effective strategies.

Jesselina Rana, co-founder of Pad2Go, participated as one of five panelists at the event. Other panelists represented Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Jesselina emphasized the strength of grassroots organizations, citing Pad2Go's ability to deeply embed itself within communities and leverage the unique perspectives shaped by those it serves. These organizations, she noted, harness collective action to drive meaningful change.

She also highlighted the significant impact of young feminists from the Global South on international menstrual health discourse. Jesselina pointed out that the issue of menstruation was addressed for the first time at the Human Rights Council by the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Following this, the World Health Organization (WHO) issued a statement underscoring that menstrual health had not been explicitly included in key international agendas such as the International Conference on Population and Development, the Millennium Declaration, or the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for goals 3 (health), 5 (gender equality), or 6 (water and sanitation).

These statements underscore the crucial role of grassroots organizations, young activists, and networks, particularly from the Global South, in advancing discourse and perspectives often overlooked on the global stage. Their contributions have influenced international policies, strategies for feminist funding, and best practices aimed at addressing these critical issues. In light of this, Jesselina stressed the importance of strengthening networks dedicated to menstrual advocacy. This not only raises global awareness about menstruation-related issues but also informs international policy agend

as, enhances opportunities for feminist funding, and strengthens the capacity of those committed to creating lasting global change.

Lastly, Jesselina emphasized the necessity for dedicated and flexible funding for menstrual health activism, research, and innovation. She called for collaboration among international and regional organizations to amplify best practices at national and local levels. She also underscored the importance of viewing menstrual experiences through an intersectional lens that considers gender, caste, region, disability, race, and age.

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