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Celebrating World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2024

Celebrating World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2024

Towards a Period-Friendly World

On May 28th, we observe World Menstrual Hygiene Day—a day dedicated to breaking taboos, raising awareness, and pushing for better menstrual health and hygiene practices around the globe. This year’s theme, “Period Friendly World,” calls us to envision and create a world where menstruation is not a barrier but a normal, respected part of life. Menstruation is the key indicator of onset of puberty. Due to lack of adequate and correct information and support, menstruation becomes a big stigma for girls throughout their lives.

For an adolescent girl, her world is “Period Friendly World” only when:

  • She finds Menstrual health is integrated into education systems. Boys are also getting educated about it.
  • Health service providers are providing MHM related services without any shame or hesitation
  • Menstrual products are accessible and affordable everywhere.
  • Girls are not missing schools and other aspirations as there is no more shame or stigma associated with menstruation.
  • She gets the right information and responses to her queries through any channel of sourcing information of her choice.
  • Safe, hygienic spaces are available for all menstruators to manage their periods with dignity.

PCI India, Umang project (implemented in Jharkhand), informs that adolescent girls rarely reach out to their mothers for any queries related to menstruation. Although mother is her most close associate in the family, but still, she is not accessible for such conversations. There is a huge gap in communication across generations about their reproductive and sexual health. Silence around menstruation is one of the reasons for all menstruator suffering from shame and experiencing an undignified menstruation across generations from so many years.

Stigma attached to menstruation and to all menstruators is a regressive social norm globally that needs a comprehensive effort at all levels of our social eco-system. 28th May every year gives us the opportunity to reiterate the message and reinforce our efforts towards dignified menstruation and its experience for all menstruators.

Referring to the 5-stage process of shifting social norms by Cristina Bicchieri, this is to call to strengthen the efforts towards ‘period-friendly world’.

  1. We need to engage in more direct conversations to understand the biological process of menstruation and the deconstruct the descriptive and injunctive norms surrounding menstruation among men, women, boys and girls.
  2. We need to take collective actions to change the way we think, belief and expect to behave from ourselves and from others. Shame or stigma should be shamed.
  3. Advocate for stricter policy implementation to enable girls regular school attendance or women to be regular at their work place without any shame or have quality access to resources for MHM.
  4. Create enabling environment for open conversations, access to resources for MHM and a new norm of world being ‘period-friendly’.


As we celebrate World Menstrual Hygiene Day 2024, let’s commit to creating a period-friendly world where everyone can manage their periods with dignity, health, and respect. Together, we can make a difference—one conversation, one policy, and one act of self-care at a time.

Let’s break the silence, end the stigma, and support menstrual health for all. Happy World Menstrual Hygiene Day!

Author: Sushmita Mukherjee; Director – Gender and Adolescent Girls, PCI India

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