The economic impacts of COVID-19 has plunged girls in Zimbabwe deeper into period poverty. Due to loss of income, many girls are resorting to unhygienic menstrual products. These include old socks, newspapers and old cloth, among others. Worryingly, these products are exposing girls to Reproductive Tract Infections (RTIs) and Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) as well as to sexual harassment due to leakages. In addition, lack of proper sanitary products limits girls and women to participate equally with
men in opportunities which can emancipate them.
Period poverty is also aggravated by the government which is ignoring the rights of women in its COVID-19 responses and recovery. Specifically, the National Zimbabwe Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19 lack gender inclusion analysis, and neglect women’s unique needs such as mensuration. “We cannot let this injustice prevail”, instead, we are bridging this gap by
distributing sanitary products and providing information on menstrual health management (MHM) to girls in Zaka district under Masvingo Province, Zimbabwe. We also advocate for the local government to consider girls and women’s MHM and sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) in its COVID-19 responses. In the long run, we are advocating for the government of Zimbabwe to consider women’s SRHR in its Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) policies, budgets and plans.
In Zimbabwe, about 34% of girls are married before the age of 18 years whilst 5% is married before the 15th birthday. Major causes for child marriage are wide-ranging, however, projections stated that, numbers are intensifying because of the surging Covid-19 pandemic. In response, funded by the
Canadian Embassy through the Canada Fund for Local Initiative, TYDT is implementing a project that aims at reducing and mitigating child marriage during acute and recovery phases of COVID-19 in Zaka district through livelihood support, behavioral change approach and advocacy.
Funded by the Overseas Development Institute through the Advancing Learning and Innovation on Gender Norms (ALIGN), Tariro Youth Development Trust is implementing a project that seeks to carry out a rigorous evidence based research project on Gender Based Violence (GBV) experiences of women in small scale artisanal mining. The study will be carried out in three mining
hotspot districts in Zimbabwe namely Insiza, Mberengwa and Zvishavane, utilizing a mixed methods approach involving collection of qualitative and quantitative data from women and girls in ASM, government line ministries, organisations fighting GBV and advancing the rights of women and girls and other relevant stakeholders.
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