Menstrual hygiene is a much neglected issue within the water and sanitation sector and there are critical gaps in the body of evidence on menstrual hygiene, including a lack of systematic studies analyzing best practices in Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM). To address this gap, WaterAid is currently developing MHM guidelines for practitioners from the WASH sector, and other related sectors such as reproductive health and education.
MHM is complex and needs to be addressed holistically and in context as a package of services that includes voice and space to talk about the issue, adequate water, privacy, facilities for washing and disposal and increased awareness amongst men, women, boys and girls. Based on a review of existing literature, manuals and programme documentation, and interviews with practitioners with experience on the ground, the guidelines will set out the key elements of MHM programmes and how to contextualise them.
The research team (Sarah House, Therese Mahon and Sue Cavill) would be pleased to hear from practitioners and organisations with documentation or experiences to share. Please send any relevant documentation or suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org .
The guidelines are being produced through the SHARE initiative (www.shareresearch.org ) and will be available at the end of 2011.