God Takes Me to Strange Places

Recently I hit “the google” again and started researching sewing patterns for reusable menstrual pads. What the…?

I promise you, I cannot come up with these things on my own. I’ve been thinking about them for the past few years, ever since I went on a short-term mission trip to Malawi. Our team leader was collecting them for our trip, but I didn’t think much of it at the time. I didn’t recognize the need.

It seems I may be way behind the times in this “crunchy” endeavor. People have been blogging about this since 2002. Prior to the invention of disposable products, I’d bet these were just the things ladies used for generations previously. Right?

It makes sense. When I was in the baby-raising stages of life, I (generally) opted to use cloth diapers for my babes. Yet I’ve never thought to don the cloth (ahem) “sani-panties” myself.

Truth is, I’m not sewing these for myself (though why not?). I’ve been following Africa New Life Ministries for some time on Facebook and I just read about their SHE campaign (Support Her Education). They’re asking people to donate 1 bra, 1 box of pads and $5 to help with shipping. Here’s why:

Girls in Africa do not always have access to basic needs like bras and feminine products. Therefore, they may go to school feeling embarrassed, or uncomfortable, or they may just opt to skip school all-together, falling behind their males peers.

Studies show that providing girls with an education reduces the cycle of poverty. Empowering women impacts GENERATIONS, because they’re more apt to invest their money into their children (education, medical care, etc.) Here’s the video if you’d like to take a look:

Let’s make this easier for these women. Let’s get them what they need. Good ol’ “Aunt Flo” should not keep these girls from school. They already have bigger obstacles. Let’s just go ahead and make the sani-panties. (or buy a box of disposables – whatever man!)

I want to enlist as many people as possible to help me with this. But the problem is: Africa New Life Ministries want these items in their Portland, OR office by 5/22. Given that it can take a week for a package to arrive there from CT, there’s basically NO TIME. BUT/SO: If you would like to participate and can get me these things by Friday, I will pay for the shipping. Here’s what you’ll need to collect:

1 new bra
1 box of pads (or you can craft your own sani-panties)
$5 donation so that Africa New Life can ship these items to Rwanda

Sooo… I picked up a bra while I was at TJMaxx today… WITH my 9-yo boy in tow. Wasn’t awkward for ME. And I guess I’ll be making my sani-panties tomorrow. If you’d like a pattern to print, check out this one. And if you want to participate in the SHE campaign with me, please contact me and we’ll work out the details.

I don’t know why God has taken me down the Sani-Panti trail. But I love to drag people on these crazy journeys with me. So hop on the Sani-Panti bandwagon and help us empower women halfway across the globe.

Buy a product.
Help a girl.
Change her life.
Strengthen a community.

Let no debt remain outstanding, except for the continuing debt to love one another,
for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law.
Romans 13:8

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  1. Thank you for posting this, I will be in touch very soon!!!

  2. Cindy Praisner

    Fantastic Idea! I’ve recently been researching alternative options myself. Dabbling with a menstrual cup which is interesting but I think with some getting used to, much more convenient and environmentally conscious. There is a menstrual cup maker in Britain that has a similar mission as SHE. They have a buy one, give one like Toms. Only for women only :) If someone misses your deadline, this could be an option…http://www.ruby-cup.com/

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