Maasai Mara University has gone a notch higher in realizing the Big Four Agenda championed by President Uhuru Kenyatta. This is with specific focus on industrialization whereby it is spearheading establishment of a modern factory that will manufacture washable sanitary towels to serve the East African Region and beyond.
This initiative is timely and crucial as it will save girls and women from vulnerable families and marginalised communities the burden of sufferings and discomforts during monthly periods due to inability to purchase sanitary towels.
Plans to achieve this have been on the pipeline and came to a climax on 14.12.2020 after Maasai Mara University sealed partnership with Echo Network Africa (ENA) formerly known as Kenya Women Holding (KWH) founded in 1982.
The deal was seized after the Maasai Mara University Acting Vice-Chancellor Professor Kitche Magak and the Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor Administration, Finance and Planning Dr. Jamesi Nampushi led the Maasai Mara University fraternity in signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with ENA. The ENA Group CEO Dr. Jennifer N. Riria who has been instrumental in fast tracking the project led the team from ENA into signing the agreement with MMU, a step that she said was long overdue.
According to Njuguna Kamau who plays critical role in resource mobilization at MMU, the dream to manufacture washable sanitary towels was spiced by Bedi Fabrics who moved swiftly to donate sewing machines to the University aiming to see the project take off immediately. He also hinted that a private investor from Nakuru County has donated roofing materials that will complete the factory structures.
Trainers of trainers (ToTs) on the production of the washable sanitary towels have already been trained in order facilitate easy knowledge transfer to other University staff who will be brought on board to take part in the production process. The ToTs emanate from the Directorate of Gender at Maasai Mara University.
At later stages of the project, the Varsity will also produce the common sanitary towels presently on shelves but in an improved version to make them environmentally friendly.
Partnership with ENA comes with multiple blessings to Maasai Mara University as the pact is not only solely founded on the coveted washable sanitary towels factory but also encompasses a good number of programmes geared towards creating a better society.
These programmes are:
- Women Empowerment (Women Inclusion in the Aquaculture Value Chain)
- Positioning (Tubule & Engendering Reform Processes)
- Advocacy (Sexual Reproduction and Maternal Health)
- Youth Empowerment (Women & Girls in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics [STEM])
- Research and Innovation.
Image: The Maasai Mara University Acting Vice-Chancellor Professor Kitche Magak (seated Left) and the ENA Group CEO Dr. Jennifer N. Riria (seated Right) sign an MOU to catalyze societal development through women empowerment programmes. The MOU was signed at the Maasai Mara University Conference Hall.