Ujjwala Sanitary Napkin initiative
Union Petroleum Minister launched the Ujjwala Sanitary Napkin initiative in Bhubaneswar, which will expand women’s access to hygiene products and provide them with employment opportunities in every district of the state.
Overall use of sanitary napkins in Odisha is 33.5 per cent and only 42.8 per cent of rural women between the age of 15 and 24 years use proper hygienic methods of protection during menstruation. The oil companies came up with this initiative keeping this scenario in mind.
- Under the initiative, which will cover 93 blocks in 30 districts of Odisha, oil marketing companies (OMC) will set up 100 manufacturing units at the Common Service Centres (CSC) at an estimated cost of Rs 2.94 crore.
- At least 10 Ujjwala beneficiary women will get employment at each CSC. Each facility will have a capacity to produce 1,200-2,000 pads per day and will have a sterilisation room to ensure that the napkins are sterilised before they are packed for use by rural women.
- The Central scheme will be a counter to the Odisha government’s Khushi scheme, in which sanitary napkins are provided free of cost to female students of government and government-aided schools in the state.
- This core objective of the mission in Odisha is educating women on female hygiene and health, improve accessibility to low cost eco friendly sanitary pads and boosting rural employment and economy.
- By providing women training in manufacturing and sale of sanitary napkins, this initiative not only provides them with a dignified channel to earn but also equips them with entrepreneurial skills.
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