Inspiration: Drokmo means sister in Tibetan. A spirit of sisterhood is shared among women as a way of bonding, supporting, and sharing the most intimate subjects, such as women’s menstrual period, pregnancy, and relationships, in culturally sensitive communities. In this spirit, Tibetan Village Project (TVP) is making an effort to create a support system among sisters by breaking cultural and economic barriers and promoting the health and well-being of women. Thus, TVP invites all sisters to join our Sisters-in-Sisters Health Initiative and let empowered Drokmo lead the way forward.
Issue: Despite the efforts being made by TVP and other NGOs to extend health care and health education in Tibet, most rural Tibetans, particularly women, still face enormous challenges: (1) there is very limited access to health education; (2) the quality of available sanitation products is poor; and (3) most women can not afford to pay for higher-quality care products that are available in urban areas. Most health facilities are concentrated at the county or higher level, but most of the Tibetan population lives in rural areas. Thus, there is high incidence of serious diseases. Women especially face this due to hygiene-related illnesses at the township and village levels.
Project: Based on what has worked in many other places, Tibetan Village Project (TVP) is working to design, produce, and distribute a culturally appropriate menstrual pad along with educational materials for rural women in Tibet. In the summer of 2018, a group of volunteers from American will travel to Tibet and organize three health education workshops that will be attended by about 30 women in three different communities. These women will receive about 100 self-care sanitary kits, including menstrual pads and a health education booklet. These women will return to their own communities to introduce “Drokmo Model: Sisters-in-Sisters Health Initiative”, while tuning the program based on their specific local needs.
What You Can Do
- Make menstrual pads
- Buy a sewing machine and fabric for pad materials
- Sponsor a women’s kit for $40
- Travel to Tibet and teach women how to make pads
- Host a fundraising dinner at home and invite your Drokmo to join
- Introduce the initiative to others who can be resources