On 16 July, 2017 ‘RITU’ project with the ‘Best Schools of Girls’ TV series was inaugurated at Karabi hall, PMO by the joint initiative of Access to Information Program (a2i) Programme, Prime Minister’s Office and Red Orange Media and Communication. Honorable Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid, MP, attended as the chief guest this ceremony and announced the inauguration of the campaign project for increasing the school-based awareness on girls’ menstrual health management. Honorable Ambassador of the Kingdom of Netherland, Leoni Margaretha Cuelenaere; Director General of Secondary and Higher Education Professor Dr. S M Wahiduzzaman and Director General of Health Professor Dr. Abul Kalam Azad were present as the special guests. The programme was chaired by Mr. Kabir Bin Anwar, Director General (Administration) of Prime Minister’s Office and Project Director of a2i Programme.
Honorable Education Minister Mr. Nurul Islam Nahid, MP, delivered his speech, quoted that Ministry of Education, was gave an order to all secondary schools for providing necessary health support during menstrual period and ensure to make women friendly toilets in 2015. According to that official notification, the Honorable Minister urged all secondary schools to ensure all the facilities for menstrual health management. He further urged, “The education ministry hopes that teachers in all the secondary schools should teach the menstrual health management chapter seriously”.
The guests of this ceremony, stated that giving accurate information about the menstrual health management of children, breaking all taboos and barriers, will play a significant role in building them as open-minded people, through this RITU campaign,. In Bangladesh every year, 2.5 million women are engaged in menstruation cycle. But due to lack of consciousness about menstruation hygiene, 85 percent of women are using unhealthy old clothes. And 36 percent school girls have no idea about menstruation before the first menstrual cycle. Unconsciousness about the menstruation hygiene has made many obstacles during their youth growing period. The RITU project has started the journey to make Menstrual friendly in Bangladesh, which will increase awareness of monthly health management. The objective of this campaign is to make people aware of the school children, their parents, teachers and locals, under the slogan ‘RITU is Normal and Natural’.
In addition to this, school based 13-episode educational infotainment program ‘ Best School for girl’s on menstrual hygiene and management’ has developed in Bangladesh for the first time. The program is currently being telecasted on Bangladesh Television (BTV). Later, various activities of ‘RITU Campaign’ will be telecasted through BTV as well as through the social media page of a2i, Bangladesh Betar, and Sangshad TV.
Mr. Kabir Bin Anwar, Project Director of a2i Programme told that “a2i programme and RITU project will work together to provide menstrual health management information to the doorsteps of the people. He expect that, we are looking forward to change the current situation on menstrual hygiene and ensure the participation of everyone for ensuring the quality of life. “
In order to implement the ‘RITU’ project, international organizations like: SIMAVI, Red Orange Media and Communications and TNO will work together. Besides, BNPS and DORP will work for the field level activation. Different Government, non-government organizations and senior officials of a2i and media representatives were present in this occasion.