Bulqia: A Student With Hearing Disability Who Actively Campaigning About Menstrual Hygiene

Bulqia (15 years old) is a student from special school in Mataram with hearing disability. On February 2020, Bulqia was selected by his school to be a peer educator to Community-led Total Sanitation-Menstrual Hygiene Management (CLTS-MHM) program and asked to join the training held by Yayasan Plan International Indonesia (Plan Indonesia). He was selected because of his strong motivation and high creative thinking skill regardless his disability.

Picture 1: Bulqia in his video about men and menstruation

Since the government issued a regulation to cancel all face-to-face learning in school on March 2020, all students in Indonesia, including Bulqia, have to study from home. However, quite the contrary, this situation has sharpened Bulqia’s creative thinking skill and encouraged him to continue being creative. Bulqia has made a campaign video by himself about the prevention of COVID-19 spreading. Besides, he was also actively campaigning about the importance of men involvement in menstrual hygiene campaign during COVID-19 pandemic. Aside from making campaign videos, Bulqia has also actively been sharing his videos to Whatsapp Groups and other social media. You can also see the video that Bulqia made here.

“As a boy, we cannot tease girls who are in their period. If we see girls who are in their period, we should help them. For example we can bring them to school health unit or take them home if they feel menstrual pain.” Said Bulqia in his video.

Bulqia’s activeness in campaigning resulted in him being involved as a speaker several times in Menstrual Hygiene and Health Webinar by Plan Indonesia. During the webinar, Bulqia gave a message that boys have an important involvement in menstrual hygiene campaign, particularly during COVID-19 pandemic. You can watch his testimonial video here.

Not only being acknowledged by his school and Plan Indonesia, Bulqia’s active efforts in educating his peers also made him get an award from Indonesia Child Protection Commission (KPAI). On July 22, 2020 Bulqia became one of Anugerah KPAI awardees.

Picture 2: Bulqia received KPAI Award 2020

Plan Indonesia collaborated with central and regional government to ensure the protection for children and youth. Plan Indonesia always encourage the meaningful participation of children and youth, particularly girls, young women, and children with disabilities, like Bulqia, for getting as many opportunities to speak and to be heard by decision makers. (Plan Indonesia/Hanna Vanya)