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24-year-old raises funds online to make eco-friendly sanitary napkins available to women

Saturday, 17 October 2020 (18:35 IST)
Ahmedabad: To end ‘period poverty’ and make safe sanitation accessible to women, Vruti Patel, from Ahmedabad, has taken to raising funds online for making eco-friendly sanitary napkins available to menstruating women from underprivileged backgrounds. The 24-year-old quit her job as a corporate lawyer in Mumbai and moved back to her hometown. Through her initiative, ‘Ecoflo’, Vruti aims to spread awareness about safe and hygienic menstruation practices along with providing menstruating individuals with free access to eco-friendly sanitary napkins.
As part of Ecoflo, Vruti aims at collecting funds to the tune of Rs 1 lakh, of which some Rs 78,210 have already been raised through contribution from 44 donors on online crowd funding platform ImpactGuru.com. 
ImpactGuru.com has waived off its platform fee for Ecoflo fundraiser as the 0% ImpactGuru Platform fee option has been made available to all types of fundraisers hosted on the platform. ImpactGuru has so far helped raised funds for patients facing medical emergencies such as Covid-19, cancer, organ transplants, or for not-for-profit organisations for their programmes. 
“With the funds raised through crowdfunding, I hope to support the countrywide movement to end Period Poverty, and encourage people to shift towards more environment-friendly alternatives,” said Vruti. 
Having partnered with Aakar Innovations, which is India’s first government-certified producer of economical and fully compostable sanitary napkins, Ecoflo is all set to launch its first sanitary napkin distribution drive in Ahmedabad after this Dussehra. 
“Through this drive, we aim to create awareness of and accessibility to clean, simple and economical sanitary products. The eco-friendly sanitary napkins which we provide, are supposed to be disposed in a pit, and will turn into compost within 90-180 days, depending on varying environmental factors,” Vruti further added.
The larger goal, according to Vruti, is to educate people about menstruation by engaging in an open dialogue and breaking the taboo around menstruation. “Conditions for menstruating individuals in India can only improve when awareness on menstrual hygiene is spread. Our aim is to educate women across all ages on what menstruation is and why the taboos surrounding it do tremendous harm. Simultaneously, we also aim to provide access to sanitary napkins to menstruating individuals to ensure that they do not fall prey to age old unhygienic traditions of using cloth, soil or sand and therefore, improve the status of menstrual hygiene in India,” she explained.
So far, Vruti has conducted interactive sessions that have involved 2,000+ adolescents and she helped educate and train them about effective menstrual hygiene management and sustainable menstrual products. Vruti has also collaborated with ‘Jan Aushadhi Kendra’ to educate children in rural India about ‘Suvidha’, a low-cost biodegradable sanitary napkin and the resulting positive impact on the environment.

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