Joel Mwabise is the Programme Coordinator at Irise’s partner, Care and Empowerment of the Vulnerable (CEVA). He believes in the potential of the youth in Uganda and across Africa to transform their futures.
Joel was recently trained by Irise to teach young people about menstruation and puberty. Following the training he also signed up as an Irise entrepreneur so he can make sure affordable sanitary products are available to everyone in his community.
Joel has started speaking with the women he works with about menstruation, encouraging girls to stay in school especially during their periods. In his home life, Joel now speaks with his friends about the sanitary products available for women and how to handle menstruation in general.
Joel encourages women not to think they are sick but spreads the word that menstruation is normal. He often buys pads for his female friends when they are caught out and is able to offer this support because he has worked to create a platform where the women in his life can talk freely about menstruation with him.
Joel believes teachers should be able to teach boys about menstruation and encourage boys to support their fellow female colleagues and friends. With the right information they will no longer see menstruating women and girls as outcasts or dirty.
Joel feels much more knowledgeable following Irise’s training and support and believes the work he is doing with his community on this issue is meaningful and valuable. It helps keep girls in school and improves their confidence meaning they are better equipped to realise their full potential and help transform the future of his country and continent.