Student Project Providing Eco-Friendly, Reusable Menstruation Pad Alternative Wins $20,000 Race for Climate Action Award
November 21, 2022
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - The Enactus team from Jamia Millia Islamia, India, won the Enactus Race for Climate Action Impact Competition held during the 2022 Enactus World Cup with their project Shrimati. Shrimati advances progress against the climate crisis while also improving the lives of Indian women through development of an eco-friendly reusable sanitary napkin created from natural banana and bamboo fibers, as opposed to plastic materials found in many traditional female hygiene products. The students will receive $20,000 in project scaling funding from Race for Climate Action sponsor Intuit. Additionally, the second place team will receive a $10,000 award from Intuit.
During a five-minute virtual presentation, the team from Jamia Millia Islamia outlined the scope of Shrimati, which advances multiple solutions through its business model. The Shrimati operation eliminates plastic from the environment through the manufacture of reusable and biodegradable sanitary pads, reduces “period poverty” (the economic hardship experienced by low-income women trying to afford menstrual products), and increases female hygiene education. The pads, made from natural materials, have a lifespan of twelve months, and the team has already reduced 4,620 kilograms of plastic waste in the past six months through their distribution. Additionally they have employed 78 low-income women from across India in the manufacture of the pads, providing wages to a marginalized group. Furthermore, the students from Jamia Millia Islamia have partnered with various NGOs to distribute 5,500 pads along with education to combat the stigma of menstruation prevalent in some Indian communities, proof positive of their declaration that, “At Enactus JMI, we believe in being the change by bringing the change.”
Watch the team’s video summary of Shrimati here.
The Race For Climate Action is a year-long program in which Enactus student teams advance United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 13, Climate Action, with positive climate impact being a primary thrust. In addition to the Race For Climate Action, Enactus offered three other Races during the 2021-2022 year: the Race to Rethink Plastic, the Race to Feed the Planet, and 1 Race 4 Oceans. Any Enactus team in the global network can enter a project in a Race. During the year, the Race for Climate Action projects advanced to a top-twelve field which was further winnowed to a top-five group. These finalists participated in a juried competition at Enactus World Cup.
At Enactus World Cup, students compete, collaborate, make intercultural connections, and are inspired to further develop skills that foster social entrepreneurship. The Enactus World Cup and the Impact Race Competitions are the culmination of a year or more of innovation by students launching social enterprises as part of Enactus, the world’s largest experiential learning platform preparing the next generation of leaders to achieve the United Nations’ 17 Global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The 2022 Enactus World Cup, which took place in Puerto Rico from 30 October – 2 November, was attended by over 3,000 people, supported by over thirty local and global businesses, and is estimated to have generated over $4 million for the Puerto Rican economy.
Founded in the United States in 1975, Enactus is the largest experiential learning network that prepares the next generation of leaders to advance the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals through social entrepreneurship and innovation. Through its international network of business, academic and student leaders, the organization provides a platform for students to develop leadership and career readiness skills while working with prestigious organizations worldwide. In 2021, Enactus students in 35 countries positively impacted 11.6 million lives through their social innovation projects and helped launch 1,626 small businesses, advancing the 17 United Nations’ Global Goals. For more information visit http://www.enactus.org.