Binti stands for safe menstruation and providing access to sanitary pads for all strata of society. We contacted them and interviewed their CEO, Manjit Gill and asked her a few questions about the revolutionary initiative that is Binti.
- We know that starting from scratch with the aim to make lives globally better is no easy task. What made you start an initiative like this?
I use to be a mentor for the Cherie Blair Foundation and was mentoring a young lady in Nairobi when I learned that some women did not have access to sanitary pads and that they had to use leaves, rag, sand, cow dung and other unhygienic methods. I realised that I had lived a very male dominated life in my career where I competed against men with my talents. I would never been able to do that if I did not have access to a pad.
- Tell us more about BINTI and its wonderful purpose to spread awareness about menstruation. What kind of projects do you embark on?
We setup projects so that women can produce their own pads, disposable or reusable depending on the needs of the women. We love educating girls about periods because in places like India most girls don’t know why they bleed, where the blood comes from or how to take care of themselves. We also fund raise or do donation drives sometimes so that we can collect pads for women in the UK. The other aspect to our organisation has grown rapidly as we realise that menstrual taboo is a global phenomena because even in the West we sign up to a secret code when we start.
- Would you like to share your individual inspirations in life?
I’m a rule breaker and think outside of the box because I believe there are opportunities all around us to do something different and make someones life easier. Share your passion. Send out positive vibes, and find solutions!
- During this journey, what has kept you going? Has there been any single or perhaps multiple incidents/interactions which fuel your passion?
My passion is always fuelled by the stories on the ground. When I listen to the girls share their period experiences I always feel more compelled to keep going. The idea that girls at their most vulnerable normal state do not have access to safe sanitation reminds me to pick up the phone and make the next call to find a way to help them
- How does BINTI involve volunteers? How can anyone reading this help?
Binti is fortunate enough to create a platform for volunteers to utilise their own skill set to help us to reach our goals. We are always looking for artists, editors, accountants, tech guys or ways to generate income. Perhaps your dream is go and help set a project up in a rural area? Sometimes it’s just the massive support on social media that really helps with creating awareness. Please do check us out on our website binti.co.uk or social media links.