African Empowerment Hub Uganda
Commonwealth Point of Light 202. Nabuule Senfuma
Nabuule Sandrah Senfuma, representing Uganda, aged 36, founded the ‘African Empowerment Hub’ to educate girls about menstrual hygiene and sexual reproductive health.
The organisation has distributed sanitary materials to 174,800 young girls between 9 and 20 years old, as well as teaching girls and women how to make reusable sanitary pads. Nabuule and members of the initiative have also given menstrual hygiene talks to over 40,000 people from across Uganda, which has resulted in improved attendance and performance at school.
H.E. Kate Airey OBE, British High Commissioner to Uganda, said:
“Women and girls represent half of the world’s population and therefore also half of its potential. But inequalities faced by girls can begin right at birth and many girls are deprived of access to even basic services including education and health care. The work the ‘Africa Empowerment Hub’ are doing to help educate girls in basic female hygiene and health care is invaluable and I am delighted this has been officially recognised, with Sandrah Senfuma awarded the Points of Light award. Points of Light awards are given to outstanding individuals who are making a real difference and change in their community. Congratulations to Sandrah and the whole of the ‘Africa Empowerment Hub’ team for the work they are doing to help the girl child in Uganda.”
“I’m so overwhelmed, humbled and honoured. Menstruation is not a curse but a blessing and I’ll not rest until as many girls as I can reach are aware of this and can access menstruation tools and until there’s hardly any menstruation stigma. No girl should miss classes because of menstruation bully and because they don’t have pads to use during this period because ‘We all Adore a Future’.
“This award means a lot to me and is evidence of the results of perseverance, resilience, hard work, never underestimating small beginnings and always starting with what you have, however little.
“I’m so glad I chose to follow my passion and to focus on community impact instead of profits. The smiles on the faces of many girls when I go back to monitor whether the pads made a difference are more fulfilling than any salary. And this award is more meaningful to me than any financial bonus would have ever been.
“I’m more motivated to keep going and preaching the gospel according to Menstrual Hygiene Management and ending menstruation stigma.
“Lastly, as I always conclude, whenever anyone is travelling, please carry a pack of pads and some panties and give to a girl you meet and feel needs them.
“This award is for all the people who never tire of giving whenever I call upon them. I call them auntie pads and uncle pads.”
Pictured below: Sandrah receiving her award from Deputy High Commissioner Louise Ellis at the British High Commission Kampala