Do You Know About These 4 Start-ups Working For Women's Sanitation?
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What befits a man if he only thinks about his own comfort and not the society at large? Today, science has progressed and surpassed the human imagination. It is, therefore, not wrong to say that science is the modern age religion. We have witnessed science as a destructive force in the form of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. In fact, the discovery and invention of nuclear weapons testify to this. But when science is put to the correct use, one that aims to benefit humanity, it can bring about a change in the mankind at the most fundamental level.
Another aspect of humanity which should be the topmost concern of all leaders-political and business, as well as the ordinary beings, is women’s sanitation. It was brave of Akshay Kumar to come up with a movie on sanitary pads, highlighting an unsung hero working for women’s sanitation. The movie came, set the cash registers ringing but it did spread awareness and perhaps, much more than that. However, women’s sanitation as a challenge needs to be reiterated and should be brought to light time and again. This article brings you 4 organizations working at the ground level to improve women’s sanitation in India. These organizations have put science to such use that it ensures the well-being, comfort and ease of women, including those women who are at the lowest pedestal of society’s hierarchy, not leaving them neglected or ignored.
Niine produces quality driven and affordable sanitary pads in partnership with Shudh Plus Hygiene Products. Niine is also famous for its movement to combat social taboos related to menstruation and menstrual awareness that exist since times immemorial in India. Amar Tulsiyan, Founder of Niine Movement elucidates, “The Niine Movement is an ambitious 5-year plan that aims to tackle the taboos associated with menstruation by engaging all genders and ages to step forward and join hands to promote the importance of menstrual hygiene awareness."
Regarding the conflicted mindset of the people in India towards menstruation, he further elaborates, "Understanding the need for collective effort to change mindsets, the Niine Movement intends to use its convening power to engage multi-sector groups in India - from governments, corporates and the NGO community - to sustain not only a discussion but encourage affirmative action on addressing menstrual hygiene management.” Niine Movement aims to achieve their mission by educating people about menstruation, enrolling citizens in a taboo-free environment campaigns and work towards enhancing the sanitation sector of the country.
Sanitary pads are the ease and comfort, unrest and discomfort of all women. While sanitary pads provide stain-free days to women, they are not the best of options in terms of the inconvenience they cause to your health. Conventional sanitary pads contain plastic, which harms the environment. Also, a chemical called Dioxin is used to bleach cotton which is responsible for the whiteness of the sanitary pads. The chemicals in the sanitary pads make their way into your body because of the constant contact with the bloodstream.
Derived from pure and organics, Purganics ensures 100% organic products. The sanitary pads, napkins and tampons are free of plastic, chlorine, irritants, chemicals etc. Nisha Bains, Founder of Purganics, speaking to Entrepreneur explains the mission of her team, “Purganics is a mission-driven for benefit enterprise. We strive to get high quality, effective, safe, eco-friendly to you which follow our principles of being. We are the only Indian brand to have 100% certified organic feminine hygiene products - all our claims are backed up by global GOTS and ICEA certifications, which certify that our product is organic from the seed level to the finished product and all processes in between.”
Have you, as women, ever sulked and wondered if a solution after sitting in semi-squat positions in dirty public toilets? The solution to this problem is presented by PeeBuddy.
This organization manufactures female urination devices that can be safely used while urinating in public toilets without the stress of catching the infection. PeeBuddy produces a funnel-shaped device which can be placed between the legs right under the flow area. After use, this device can be disposed off. Deep Bajaj, Founder of PeeBuddy emphasizes, “We are committed to solving those feminine intimate issues which are often ignored. For us, poverty is not always financial, it's in lack of power, lack of options and lack of equality! For instance in unfriendly toilets at marathons/events/fuel stations - a woman who wants to pee is as poor as someone in the village who doesn't have a toilet. Hence we launched PeeBuddy - India's first female urination device using which women can stand & pee.”
The mission of PeeBuddy is to identify all such intimate related issues faced by Indian women and solve them with their unique products like PeeBuddy.
According to a report by ActionIndia, about 71% of the public washrooms are in unusable conditions in the country. Women, therefore, are vulnerable to the various kinds of infections related to the urinary tract.
On similar lines like PeeBuddy, SANFE or Sanitation for Females, an initiative started by IIT Delhi students, manufactures a device that will increase ease and comfort of women by using this use-and- throw devices while urinating in public places. SANFE produces affordable and sustainable solutions. This sanitation device enables women to stand and pee and saves them from having any physical contact with dirty toilet seats.
Archit Aggarwal, founder of SANFE got the idea for this startup while working on a project related to the condition of washrooms in Delhi. The silent sufferings of women spurred Aggarwal into action along with his colleague, Harry Sehrawat. The intention of the team is evident when Sehrawat says, “We believe in providing quality of life to women and Sanfe is one step towards that effort.” Aggarwal is further planning to commercialise the product soon so that women can stand up for their betterment.