Guest post by Melissa Driver Beard, Executive Director
At the end of an exciting and productive week for SHE Rwanda’s Production Manager, Dany Karemera, I had the pleasure of joining Dany, Elizabeth, and members of the J&J team including Michael Moscherosch, Aimee Sealfon, John Poccia, and Ken Pelley as we presented information about the progress of our partnership to Michael Sneed, Worldwide VP Global Corporate Affairs and Josh Ghiam, J&J Consumer’s Chief Scientific Officer. Michael spoke most specifically to the market landscape and need for menstrual pads, while Aimee addressed changes that can be made to go! pad packaging that will be low-cost, eye-catching, and eco-friendly.
John, Ken, and Dany described the design and functionality of the equipment being built for SHE. They were also able to demonstrate Phase I of the equipment that will significantly increase our ability to produce quality banana fluff for our go! pads, as well as increase our production rates. This will enable us to meet one of our primary goals – providing access to affordable, disposable menstrual pads to 250,000 girls and women by the end of 2017.
As a group, we discussed the overall need for menstrual products in Rwanda and the role that J&J is playing in helping SHE address production related challenges. We also previewed Phase II and III equipment which will further streamline production and increase throughput tenfold! This equipment should be in place in our production facility in Ngoma, Rwanda by the end of 2016.
I’m thankful to be working with this dedicated team and gratified to know that SHE is making a difference in the lives of thousands of girls and women.