In Kenya, as in many countries, adolescent girls risk life-changing violations of their human rights including early marriage, sexual and gender-based violence, unintended pregnancy, and female genital cutting.
Such pressures are insurmountable without knowledge of their bodies and rights; yet, there is no mandated menstrual and reproductive health education (MRHE) curriculum to deliver this critical help. If girls cannot get answers to questions about puberty, or the tools for decision-making, they cannot make decisions in relationships. Compounding this challenge, 2 in 3 girls in Kenya cannot access sanitary pads.
Consequently, 60% of Kenyan girls drop out of secondary school, 47% of teenage pregnancies are unintended, and girls' HIV prevalence is 4X that of boys. The inability to manage menstruation reliably, coupled with a lack of reproductive health education, causes nearly 1M+ Kenyan girls to miss up to 6 weeks of school annually and accounts for 10% of all teenage transactional sex.