๐…๐‘๐„๐„ ๐’๐€๐๐ˆ๐“๐€๐‘๐˜ ๐๐€๐ƒ ๐ƒ๐ˆ๐’๐“๐‘๐ˆ๐๐”๐“๐ˆ๐Ž๐ ๐„๐—๐“๐„๐๐ƒ๐’ ๐“๐Ž ๐‘๐ˆ๐‚๐‡๐€๐‘๐ƒ ๐€๐‹๐‹๐„๐ ๐€๐๐ƒ ๐’๐“. ๐‡๐„๐‹๐‹๐„๐๐€ ๐’๐„๐‚๐Ž๐๐ƒ๐€๐‘๐˜ ๐’๐‚๐‡๐Ž๐Ž๐‹๐’ ๐ˆ๐ ๐“๐‡๐„ ๐„๐€๐’๐“๐„๐‘๐ ๐๐€๐‘๐“ ๐Ž๐… ๐“๐‡๐„ ๐‚๐€๐๐ˆ๐“๐€๐‹ ๐‚๐ˆ๐“๐˜ ๐Ž๐… ๐’๐ˆ๐„๐‘๐‘๐€ ๐‹๐„๐Ž๐๐„.

The ongoing distribution of Free Sanitary Pad to school going girls has been extended to Richard Allen and St. Hellena Secondary school in the Eastern part of Freetown. Welcoming the First Lady and team to the Richard Allen Secondary school, the acting principal Mary Kposowa, applauded the First Lady for her commitment in protecting the girl child and for always visiting their school, as she has been doing that before her present position.

Mrs Kposowa affirmed that the Free Sanitary Pad distribution is an indication that the First Lady is passionate about girls to stay in school, while assuring Madam Fatima that the girls at Richard Allen school have always performed excellently in exams and they will make good use of the Sanitary Pads.

Speaking to pupils in both schools, First Lady, Madam Fatima Maada Bio gave a recap of the Free Sanitary Pad project, which the two schools played a pivotal role during the fundraising program, hence they are fortunate to be part of the schools that are direct beneficiaries, amongst the 60,000 pupils that will be receiving the pads.

In her statement at the distribution event, Madam Fatima told the cheerful young girls menstruation is not a crime, therefore they should not be ashamed of it. โ€œMenstruation is not a choice, you need not to be ashamed, because it is not a crimeโ€ Madam Fatima called on them to focus on their education and say no to early marriage and teenage pregnancy.

The delivery of the Free Sanitary Pad is in fulfillment of a promise she made to provide hygiene sanitary pads to school girls as part of the “๐—›๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ณ๐—ณ ๐—ข๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—š๐—ถ๐—ฟ๐—น๐˜€” Campaign to keep them in school during their menstruation.

According to the First Lady, education should be a priority and the President has shown his commitment through the Free Quality Education, which she encouraged the pupils to take advantage of, as it is their right and the key to a tomorrow that will allow them to make informed choices. Her Excellency underscored the importance of the Free Sanitary Pads, highlighting the advantage it has on access to equal learning hours in school, and the feeling of being safe and secure during their menstruation.

While demonstrating the process involved in using the Sanitary Pad, Madam Fatima appealed to the girls to be each otherโ€™s keeper and report to the appropriate authorities if their friends confide in them on any form of sexual abuse.

The CEO of Maada and Fatima Bio foundation Mrs. Samba in her statement mentioned, that she stands as a proud woman to see such historic event, adding that the foundation has been existing for the last two and half years, and have been working towards development of girls, through the “๐—›๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ณ๐—ณ ๐—ข๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—š๐—ถ๐—ฟ๐—น๐˜€” campaign which is the flagship program of the First Lady, and have also gone nationwide doing advocacy and creating awareness.

The distribution exercise was done by members of Julius Maada Bio Women Wing and Fatima and Maada Bio foundation. Popular Sierra Leone celebrities in the entertainment industries such as Famous, Markmuday, Rap Gee and a few others have been working assiduously in helping the First Lady in the distribution process, performing songs they did for the Hands Off Our Girls campaign.

Strategic Communication Division
Office of The First Lady
info@officeofthefirstlady.gov.sl
+232 303 68273

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