Friday, November 18, 2016

The Cup Effect Holds Two-Day Workshop on Menstrual Cups at Sadili Oval

Mandu Reid, founder of The Cup Effect
The Cup Effect workshop was held at Sadili Oval on Friday 11th and Saturday 12th November 2016, an event that saw 21 ladies from various parts of the country gather at the sports academy.The ladies included twelve Girl Power Clubs Africa staff members from Nairobi, Busia and Siaya counties as well as nine staff from Nairobi’s Vijana Amani Pamoja (VAP). Both Sadili through its Girl Power Clubs Africa Programme and VAP are in partnership with The Cup Effect in a project aimed at raising awareness about menstrual cups and making them available to women and girls in low-income areas.

Rachael Ouko, Programme Coordinator for Femme International Kenya
This highly experiential and educative workshop was facilitated by Mandu Reid, the founder of Cup Effect, and partly by Rachael Ouko, the programme coordinator for Femme International, Kenya. Mandu also brought with her cups that were distributed to all participants.

Topics such as the female anatomy and the menstrual cycle were discussed. Mandu clearly explained the history of the menstrual cup, its advantages and how it is used. She noted that cups have been in existence since 1935. They are safe, comfortable, reusable and each of them lasts for up to 10 years!  She added that they are made of safe medical-grade silicone (NOT rubber as is normally misconceived) and allergies are therefore rare. A cup can be used for up to 12 hours before it is emptied and reinserted during menstruation.

A few of the ladies who have been using the cup, including Mandu and Rachael who have been using the cup for eight and six years respectively had a lot of positive things to say about it.  “When my sister first introduced me to the cup, I thought she was crazy as it appeared too big,” said Mandu. “It took me two months to get used to it, and now I find it very comfortable and convenient”.

Rachael on the hand took four months to get used to it. “It wasn’t easy at first, but these days I insert it and forget that I have it inside my body. It is that comfortable,” she said. 

Mandu and Rachael both emphasized on the need for practicing patience by those who intend to use the cup. “Some people take just one month to get used to the cup, others take two, three or even eight months to get used to it. You therefore need to be very patient with yourself,” said Mandu.
Menstrual cups for everyone

It was remarkable to note the fact that the average woman will menstruate for 3000 days in her life, which equates to an incredible 8 years. She will use up to 12,000 pads, tampons or other disposable items resulting in significant amounts of waste.
Group photo after the workshop

The workshop was meant to prepare Sadili and Vijana Amani Pamoja (VAP) staff to go out and raise awareness about menstrual cups and distribute them to at least 500 girls and women in low-income areas.