charity: water stories

No shame. All gain.

With access to water, sanitation, and hygiene resources, women and girls can reach their full potential.

Menstruation is a regular part of life for more than a quarter of the global population. But what happens if you have to manage a period without any of the resources that actually make it manageable, like a private bathroom or access to clean water?

It’s a reality that at least 500 million women and girls face every single month, keeping them out of school, isolated at home, and unable to fully participate in society.1

749 students. Seven teachers. Two bathrooms.

Fiona*, a student from Malawi, attended school with 749 students, seven teachers—and only one latrine for boys, and one for girls.

“At one time I started menstruating while in class. When I stood up to go to the toilet, I noticed some wetness, which made me feel like everyone in the class was looking at me. I rushed to the toilet only to find five other girls waiting for their turn to use the latrine. I will never forget that experience. Since that day, I stayed home every time I had my period.”

Fiona isn’t alone. Millions of girls struggle to manage their periods without disrupting their education.

Percentage of girls who miss school due to lack of menstrual hygiene resources

Thanks to charity: water supporters like you, Fiona’s school was able to build additional latrines, including an extra one for older girls. She hasn’t missed a day of school since.

*Fiona’s name has been changed in accordance with our Child Protection Policy.

“I am no longer in fear because of my period.”

When we visited Nora at her home in Uganda, she told us how clean water had transformed her menstrual hygiene management—a topic that can carry an unnecessary stigma in rural villages like Nora’s. Before, she was ashamed to be around other people during her period. But now, all of that has changed. She bravely shared her story in the hopes of helping other women.

Implementers & educators

Along with providing tangible resources like clean water and private bathrooms, our local partners are empowering women and girls with education about menstrual hygiene management.

At a girls’ high school in West Bengal, our local partner Splash supported teacher-led menstrual health management sessions with students and their mothers. These sessions brought several challenges to light and set positive changes into motion—including upgrading one of the school’s bathroom facilities and offering weekly menstrual hygiene counseling sessions.

Having a period should never stand in the way of having a full life. As a member of The Spring, you’ll fund resources that empower women and girls to invest in themselves, their education, and any opportunity that comes their way. It takes about $40 to bring clean water to one person.

Join The Spring