Meet the woman who is a self-made entrepreneur | Fusion - WeRIndia

Meet the woman who is a self-made entrepreneur

Meet the woman who is a self-made entrepreneur

Menstruation is a taboo subject in many places across the country. Due to the social stigma associated with it, many women have remained silent for so many decades. The taboos are slowly breaking in recent years with the constant efforts of many NGOs and social workers.

However, many menstrual taboos are prevalent in many villages and remote areas. While menstruation is considered a sin in many villages, a woman broke the social stigma associated with it by setting up a sanitary napkin manufacturing unit.

R Surya, a single mother from Koduvilarpatti village in the Theni district of Tamil Nadu, has established a small but unique business that produces eco-friendly sanitary pads.

This 44-year-old woman lost her husband at the age of 25 years. She was unsure how to care for her two young children since her studies were interrupted as she was married at 17. Surya started a boutique to meet the livelihood. But she could not continue it for a long time.

She then thought of establishing a sanitary napkin manufacturing unit. Some other women from the village were also interested in joining her. Each one invested ₹10,000 in the manufacturing unit. That’s how the all-women napkin manufacturing unit was born.

With a lot of zeal and enthusiasm, they made the pads and succeeded. But, they struggled to sell their product due to a lack of marketing experience. So, other women wished to drop from the venture. As a result, Surya had to repay their share, which ended up with a huge debt of ₹3 lakhs.

Like other women, Surya did not want to drop in the middle. She continued her research on making hygienic and eco-friendly sanitary pads and succeeded. So, Surya established a company.

These eco-friendly pads are made up of biodegradable banana fibre powder. The external sheet is made up of cotton. It also manufactures different variants of sanitary pads to provide extra protection for more hours.

Now, her Mathi pads are famous in the state. They are sold in many other states as well. Also, they are distributed to rural women through the workers, who are members of the SHG.

The pads are an excellent alternative to traditional pads because they do not have plastic covers bleached with chlorine. Though they are more expensive than many existing brands, many users believe the cost is worth it.

In this way, Surya, a self-made entrepreneur, empowers many other women also. Now, Surya is well-known in her area. Her story has inspired many women and youth. She received accolades and awards for her relentless efforts.

Image Credit: ViancaAlfarb, CC BY-SA 4.0,  via Wikimedia Commons

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