A product of the MIT senior mechanical engineering design class: a small scale manufacturing process to produce affordable sanitary protection to women in rural regions.
This process was developed to utilise local resources to produce highly affordable sanitary pads from natural fibers, such as banana and bamboo plants. Even more exciting is the simple configuration that is intended to be operated by local woman!
A silent malady is crippling over 200 million women living in rural India. These women, aged between 12 and 47, are precluded from freely engaging in and contributing to their communities simply because they lack access to affordable sanitary protection. The implications are real – every year, many of these rural girls and women miss up to 50 days of work or school. Many of these school age girls either fall behind or drop out of school entirely. As a result of missed work from working-aged women on a more macroscopic scale, India loses close to $7 billion in productivity.