Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

  • maggieschmitt
  • maggieschmitt's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • Posts: 1
  • Likes received: 2

Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Columbia University and the International Rescue Committee have launched a new project, funded by USAID’s Office for Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), focused on expanding the evidence and guidance available on MHM disposal, waste management and laundering approaches for supporting displaced adolescent girls and women. The team is seeking practical learning and examples on these topics from the global humanitarian response community. This learning will be used to develop a compendium to serve as a complement to the MHM in Emergency Toolkit, with practical guidance for emergency responders, including case studies, design strategies and assessment tools. Please see the attached info sheet for details.

We would be grateful for specific inputs on the following:
1.Documents, publications, designs, reports on these topics that would be appropriate for us to include in our review but that may not be publicly available or easily accessible.
2. The names of colleagues (at your organization, in your sector, or others) that might be able to participate in a Key Informant Interview and provide us with insights on menstrual-related disposal, waste management and laundering solutions for displaced populations.
3. Recommendations or ideas regarding existing pilots or on-going programming that in menstrual-related disposal, waste management or laundering strategies with refugee or IDP populations so that we can specifically follow up and learn from the efforts.

The compendium is intended to be a collaborative resource which engages the humanitarian community, and is a multi-organization co-published resource. We deeply value your insights and will be soliciting your feedback throughout the development to ensure we are able to account for a wide variety of perspectives and experiences.

Please contact Maggie Schmitt (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) to learn more about the project or share relevant feedback and learning. Thank you in advance!

This message has an attachment file.
Please log in or register to see it.

The following user(s) like this post: RachelTTextiles, torbenholmlarsen
You need to login to reply
  • muench
  • muench's Avatar
  • Moderator of this Forum; Freelance consultant and Wikipedian (former roles: program manager, lecturer, process engineer for wastewater treatment plants)
  • Posts: 2669
  • Karma: 52
  • Likes received: 732

Re: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Dear Maggie,

That sounds really interesting. Please keep us updated on your progress by continuing to post in this thread. I hope you had a few responses to your call already.

Have you looked through the SuSanA library to see if there are any relevant publications? Searching for MHM gives these 41 results:
www.susana.org/en/knowledge-hub/resource...title=&author=&year=

There is also the compendium on sanitation technologies in emergencies which is perhaps of interest (although I don't know if it includes anything on MHM):
www.susana.org/en/knowledge-hub/resource...library/details/3145
Gensch, R., Jennings, A., Renggli, S., Reymond, P. (2018). Compendium of Sanitation Technologies in Emergencies - 1st Edition. German WASH Network (GWN), Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag), Global WASH Cluster (GWC) and Sustainable Sanitation Alliance ( SuSanA). Berlin, Germany.

Regards,
Elisabeth

Community manager and chief moderator of this forum
(Funded via GIZ short term consultancy contract)

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Independent consultant located in Brisbane, Australia
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Twitter: @EvMuench
Sanitation Wikipedia project leader: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Sanitation
My Wikipedia user profile: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:EMsmile
You need to login to reply
  • torbenholmlarsen
  • torbenholmlarsen's Avatar
  • Posts: 17
  • Likes received: 7

Re: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Dear Maggie,

Sounds like a great study.

We have performed three field studies with our reusable sanitary pads, Safepad in Myanmar, Iraq and Jordan. They are not focussing on waste management, but there are some conclusion to be drawn from them regarding this issue. Among others the Jordan study seems to conclude that reusable sanitary pads are less liked because of the fact that the syrian women living in the camp felt ashamed to dry their pads in front of the male members of the family.

I would be happy to send you copies of the studies, I have however shared them with Marni previously, so you might already have access to them.

Best regards
Torben
The following user(s) like this post: SusannahClemence, siri
You need to login to reply
  • SusannahClemence
  • SusannahClemence's Avatar
  • independent researcher
  • Posts: 40
  • Karma: 1
  • Likes received: 13

Re: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Dear Torben, and also Maggie,
I am interested in both your studies, and especially pleased to hear about the focus on disposal, waste management and particularly laundry. If it is possible to access the findings, as a lay person not a member of an academic institution, I would like to do so.
I think your point, Torben - the embarrassment at hanging out menstrual pads in the view of others - has worldwide significance.
Any ideas how we can change this embarrassment to pride, in any culture?
Best wishes
Susannah
The following user(s) like this post: RachelTTextiles
You need to login to reply
  • campbelldb
  • campbelldb's Avatar
  • Dan Campbell, USAID Water Communications and Knowledge Management Project
  • Posts: 212
  • Karma: 12
  • Likes received: 55

Re: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Hi Maggie

You have probably seen this study but I am sending it just in case:


Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2018 Nov 15;15(11). pii: E2562. doi: 10.3390/ijerph15112562.

Menstrual Hygiene Management and Waste Disposal in Low and Middle Income Countries-A Review of the Literature.

Menstrual hygiene management (MHM) has gained some attention and several literature reviews have been published. However, both original papers and reviews tend to focus on absorbent access and use and not on the disposal of menstrual waste. This review aims to fill a gap in the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector by bringing a focus specifically on menstrual hygiene safe disposal in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC). We reviewed published literature since 2002 on menstrual hygiene with a focus on menstrual waste management and menstrual absorbent disposal in LMIC. Database searches were conducted of both peer reviewed literature and grey literature, in addition to hand searching of references of relevant earlier literature reviews. In total 152 articles and reports were identified and 75 met the inclusion criteria and was included in the final review. Existing polices on MHM was also reviewed with a focus on India and South Africa. The review showed that disposal of menstrual waste is often neglected MHM and sanitation value chains, leading to improper disposal and negative impacts on users, the sanitation systems and the environment. Findings call for further research to gain better understandings of MHM waste streams, disposal behaviors, absorbent materials and waste management technologies to deliver health, safety, mobility and dignity for women and girls.

Dan Campbell
USAID Water Communications and Knowledge Management Project
ECODIT
1901 N. Moore St, Suite 1004
Arlington, VA 22209
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
You need to login to reply
  • RachelTTextiles
  • RachelTTextiles's Avatar
  • Posts: 11
  • Karma: 1
  • Likes received: 12

Re: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Dear Torben,

I would love to also receive copies of your studies. We are looking at various reusables pad designs (that don't look like a conventional sanitary pad to work around this discomfort of drying the pad in view of men/others.

Your learnings would be valuable indeed. Please email a copy to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Rachel Starkey | Transformation Textiles
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Twitter: @EVAWearOfficial
You need to login to reply
  • RachelTTextiles
  • RachelTTextiles's Avatar
  • Posts: 11
  • Karma: 1
  • Likes received: 12

Re: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

We are currently working on several designs of reusble liners that do not look like conventional sanitary pads. We are also looking at the broader applications of LBL (Light bladder leakage) that many women suffer from and are incorporating their felt needs into the next generation product.

We are intensively looking not only at shape, but also material selection. We have been thrilled to find several options that outperform both cotton and microfiber (the typical choices for absorbent liners in reusables). We are calling this new option a multi-use Hybrid, versus a traditional reuseable, as the cost for each liner is closer to the cost of a single use disposable pad, yet can be re-used up to 10x before it is discarded.

This hybrid liner, is as soft as cotton, but can completely biodegrade to compost in approx 40 days. So has great promise for environmental conditions, and convenience to throw-away.

Happy to keep this group informed as we conduct further R & D in 2019.

Rachel

Rachel Starkey | Transformation Textiles
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Twitter: @EVAWearOfficial
You need to login to reply
  • siri
  • siri's Avatar
  • Posts: 10
  • Likes received: 3

Re: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Dear Torben,
Sounds like a very interesting study. Is it possible for you to send to me also? This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Best regards
Siri
You need to login to reply
  • torbenholmlarsen
  • torbenholmlarsen's Avatar
  • Posts: 17
  • Likes received: 7

Re: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Dear Susannah,

I will be most happy to share the Jordan Safepad study with you. I am adding it as an attachment to this post.

Happy New year to you and all SuSanA members,

This message has an attachment file.
Please log in or register to see it.

The following user(s) like this post: SusannahClemence
You need to login to reply
  • TRIVANDRUM03
  • TRIVANDRUM03's Avatar
  • Posts: 1
  • Likes received: 1

Re: Reply: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Kindly share a copy with me.

best regards

Dr. K Balachandra Kurup
You need to login to reply
  • siri
  • siri's Avatar
  • Posts: 10
  • Likes received: 3

Re: Reply: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Maybe you might find it interesting to see some pilot project reports on water use and drying for different products.

For example, here is one from Imvepi refugee settlement in Uganda Imvepi

The report estimates that water for washing of the reusable materials used before the pilot (pads/cloth and underwear) was 10-15 litres per cycle, and for menstrual cups 1 litre.

It also notes that menstruators report drying time for reusable products (cloth, pads) of up to 2 days. From other pilots WoMena has been a part of, it seems drying time and conditions vary greatly. Does anyone have any additional dokumentation on that? if there is shame associated with drying, then the sorter the better. I understand polyester (as used in AfriPads) takes much less time that cotton (as used sin many other products).
You need to login to reply
  • SusannahClemence
  • SusannahClemence's Avatar
  • independent researcher
  • Posts: 40
  • Karma: 1
  • Likes received: 13

Re: Reply: Request for practical learning on menstrual waste disposal, waste management and laundering in emergencies!

Simple cloth, folded to shape and absorb, then opened out to wash and dry, is reported to be widely used. Surely a sheet of thin cotton will dry quickly in air and sunlight?
I do wonder whether this "traditional" menstrual wear, generally made of recycled clothes, is being displaced more because it seems old-fashioned or rustic, or for commercial reasons, than for the sake of the environment or the actual status of women.
I have read claims that cloth is "unhygienic" - I can't see any evidence that it is less hygienic than reusable pads - if it dries faster could be more hygienic.
Cloth would certainly be better for the environment than disposable pads.
Women's social status will be fully raised when menstruation is acknowledged and embraced, not by making it invisible.
The questions remain:
  • how is cloth most comfortably and effectively worn, by the wide range of women who currently use it?
  • How can menstrual cloths be promoted and celebrated as a social good?
You need to login to reply
Share this thread:
Recently active users. Who else has been active?
Time to create page: 1.133 seconds