MENSTRUAL HYGIENE IN PRIMARY SCHOOLS: UNDERSTANDING THE ROLE OF SCHOOL HEALTH CLUBS IN FORTPORTAL MUNICIPALITY, KABAROLE DISTRICT, UGANDA
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Background School Health Clubs are renowned for improving health, especially WASH in primary schools. However, there is a dearth of information on how they are promoting menstrual hygiene management in primary schools. Objective: To assess the role of school health clubs towards menstrual hygiene management in primary schools in Fort portal municipality. Methodology A cross sectional study was conducted among schools with school health clubs in Fort portal municipality using both quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection. Results Majority 76.9% (130/168) showed that school female teachers taught the school health club about menstrual hygiene. A high proportion 89.5% (170/190) of school club members educated their school mates on menstrual hygiene and more than half of the participants were engaged in mobilizing school administration for necessary sanitary materials to promote menstrual hygiene. Majority 95.3% (181/190) of the respondents strongly agreed that the school health club helps in improving school hygiene. Conclusion The school health club members were generally empowered and actively participated in menstrual hygiene management. However, the schools’ administration were not adhering to the call for provision of most of the sanitary materials and facilities such as pads and incinerators, disposal buckets to support menstrual hygiene management and this can suppress the relevance of school health clubs. Therefore in order to achieve SDGs three, four, five, six, eight and twelve, policy makers and school administrators should ensure that school health clubs are created, implemented and strengthened in all schools.