– Myna customer – Reshma Santosh Mohite, Myna Mahila – Noorjaha Shaikh, Myna Mahila
We empower women to speak about the issues they are most afraid to discuss aloud.
Myna's three pillars
Knowledge about menstruation and hygienic habits are curtailed by stigma and taboos in the Indian society, where talking about period is not allowed. Myna is tackling the very issue of menstrual hygiene management at its roots. Working within the Govandi slum dwellers communities, Myna is helping to raise awareness around menstruation and in bringing affordable sanitary products directly to the women in need.
By manufacturing low cost high quality sanitary napkins, more affordable than what is already present on the market and selling them on a door-to-door scheme, Myna is able to reach out to women who would usually not step out of their house, out of shame among other reasons, to go buy pads at a nearby chemist and start the conversation to break the taboo about periods!
“I get the Myna pads at my door and only for Rs.25, so how much easier can it be for me? Myna women also explain why wearing pads was important, and I once attended their health camp, so I convinced my daughters to use pads, and pads only.”
Myna was built as a social enterprise with a clear vision of wanting to generate employment for women by creating a workplace and environment that tries and succeeds to tackle the constraints used as arguments to prevent women to enter in the labour force.
It is a safe space, at walking distance from their homes that provides them a steady salary and flexible timings adapted to their social context. Myna Mahila is more than an employer in Mumbai Slums, it was created by women for women and is as such a woman’s entrepreneurial project in what is commonly considered to be an unlikely place but is actually full of incredible potential!
“I am now able to spend money on my children’s education because of Myna. Myna women connected me to scholarship donors and I can to afford their coaching classes and save for their future. My husband respects me more now too!”
Myna provides a family for the women where we take care of them professionally and personally to help them grow as individuals and businesswomen. Our employees are not simply here to work, they are also here to learn and to engage in a dynamic community of women who stand up to get their rights acknowledged. They are motivated by the same cause: speak up about women issues, starting with the basic need for proper menstrual hygiene.
Inside the crowded space of Shivaji Nagar Slum, the Myna office holds a strong base and sets a potent example of women’s potential. We aim at running a positive dynamic in which by giving girls the means to expand themselves, they will be able to exploit their full capacities and set leading examples within the urban slum community.
“Before I joined Myna Mahila Foundation, I would be scared to even leave my house to go to the market. But the women I have met here have changed my life – they help me realize my self-confidence and stand by me when I need help. I never want to go back home at the end of the day, as I learn I can only hope that we have many more Myna Mahila in the time to come!”
– Myna customer
– Reshma Santosh Mohite, Myna Mahila
– Noorjaha Shaikh, Myna Mahila