Tampax and Always Launch Protecting Futures Program Dedicated to Helping African Girls Stay in School



    P&G FemCare brands announce joint program to provide school-based support
    and feminine hygiene products to girls in Southern Africa through HERO a
    United Nations Association Initiative

    TORONTO, Jan. 7 /CNW/ - Girls living in sub-Saharan Africa can miss up to
four days of school each month because they lack the basic necessity of
sanitary protection and other resources to manage their periods. To help give
girls in this part of the world a better chance at an education and to raise
awareness of this issue, P&G brands Always and Tampax are joining forces with
HERO, an awareness building and fundraising initiative of the United Nations
Association to launch the Protecting Futures program.
    According to research, one in ten school-age African girls do not attend
school during menstruation or drop out at puberty because of the lack of clean
and private sanitation facilities in schools.(1) And, if a girl has no access
to protective materials, or if the materials she has are unreliable and cause
embarrassment, she may be forced to stay at home while menstruating. This
absence of approximately four days every four weeks may result in the girl
missing 10 to 20 per cent of her school days.(2) The Protecting Futures
program will provide products and services to help keep girls in school as
well as help foster the overall health and well-being of every child in the
targeted school communities.
    "Working with HERO, the Protecting Futures program brings together the
brands' global resources to help make a positive impact on these young girls
by improving access to feminine hygiene products as well as education and
health services," said Michelle Vaeth, Protecting Futures Program Director for
P&G. "Through this program, Tampax and Always will help build an
infrastructure that - with support from local and national governments - can
give children in these communities the chance to reach their full potential."
    "Protecting Futures is making a positive and direct impact in the lives
of children living in HIV/AIDS-affected communities in sub-Saharan Africa.
This program also helps support two of the United Nations Millennium
Development Goals - promoting gender equity and ensuring that all boys and
girls complete a full course of primary schooling," said Gabrielle Armand,
Executive Director of Communications and Marketing for the United Nations
Association of the USA. The UNA-USA's HERO Campaign provides comprehensive
school-based support to children living in HIV/AIDS-affected communities in
Southern Africa.
    Protecting Futures, a ground-breaking commitment for up to five years,
was born out of a pilot program Always launched in Kenya two years ago through
a partnership with the Girl Child Network (GCN), and is a part of P&G's
corporate cause, Live, Learn, and Thrive which has helped over 50 million
children in need.
    Protecting Futures is a comprehensive care program that will bring
puberty education, travelling health educators, nutritious feeding programs,
educational support services, a pad distribution program and significant
construction projects to nine schools in the first year.

    
    -   Launched last year in Namibia, Protecting Futures is providing over
        200 children with improved access to education by building and
        outfitting classrooms, dormitories, kitchens and toilets at two
        school sites. The program will also fund teacher training, uniforms
        for all students and a year-round feeding program.

    -   Protecting Futures is also significantly improving the sanitation,
        health and hygiene for the community in this region by building a
        four-kilometre-long water pipeline to two schools in this region. In
        addition to providing direct access to clean water at these schools
        for all children and teachers, this project allows girls to remain in
        class all day without having to walk long distances to obtain water
        for their fellow students.

    -   This Winter 2007/2008, support will expand to HERO schools in the
        KwaZulu Natal region of South Africa where Protecting Futures will
        provide sanitary protection to young girls at nine regional schools
        to help them overcome the obstacle of attending school during
        menstruation. These girls will also benefit from an Always funded
        Health, Hygiene, and Puberty education program taught by a travelling
        health educator. In addition, Protecting Futures will fund a
        travelling health care provider for all of the children at these
        schools.

    -   In 2008, for the first time, Canadians will have the opportunity to
        apply and potentially join other students as a Hero Youth Ambassador
        on a trip to Africa to build schools for children living in
        communities affected by HIV/AIDS. Tampax and Always will help sponsor
        the HERO Youth Ambassador program through their teen-focused website,
        Beinggirl.ca. Earlier last year, 24 teens from across the U.S.A. were
        selected to become Youth Ambassadors and travelled to Namibia and
        South Africa to work on the Protecting Futures program. Their
        personal experiences were documented in a series of webisodes airing
        on Beinggirl.com/hero to help encourage and empower all teens to
        become global citizens.
    

    In support of Protecting Futures, Tampax and Always launched a dedicated
advertising, in-store and online campaign in the US and Canada in Fall 2007.
    "There are lots of reasons kids miss school," said Ms. Vaeth. "Being a
girl shouldn't be one of them."
    For more information on the Protecting Futures program and ways to be
involved and help make a difference, visit www.ProtectingFutures.com

    About P&G (NYSE:   PG)

    Three billion times a day, P&G brands touch the lives of people around
the world. The company has one of the strongest portfolios of trusted,
quality, leadership brands, including Pampers(R), Tide(R), Ariel(R),
Always(R), Whisper(R), Tampax(R), Pantene(R), Mach3(R), Bounty(R), Dawn(R),
Pringles(R), Folgers(R), Charmin(R), Downy(R), Lenor(R), Iams(R), Crest(R),
Oral-B(R), Actonel(R), Duracell(R), Olay(R), Head & Shoulders(R), Wella,
Gillette(R), and Braun(R). The P&G community consists of almost 140,000
employees working in over 80 countries worldwide. Please visit
http://www.pg.com for the latest news and in-depth information about P&G and
its brands.

    About The United Nations Association: The United Nations Association of
the United States of America is a not-for-profit membership organization
dedicated to building understanding of and support for the ideals and vital
work of the United Nations among the American people. Its educational and
humanitarian campaigns, including teaching students in urban schools, clearing
minefields and providing school-based support for children living in
HIV/AIDS-affected communities in Africa, allow people to make a global impact
at the local level.

    About HERO: A UNA-USA Campaign:

    HERO: A UNA-USA campaign (www.heroaction.org), in partnership with USAID
(www.usaid.gov), is an awareness building and fundraising initiative dedicated
to providing comprehensive, school-based support to orphans and vulnerable
children living in HIV/AIDS-affected communities in Africa. HERO, along with
its in-country partners, works with schools in Namibia, South Africa, Ethiopia
and Zambia to provide each school with a comprehensive "HERO Package" that
includes feeding programs, classrooms (repair and construction), toilets,
clean water, visiting nurses, counselors, books and other school resources.

    ---------------------------------------
    (1) UNICEF, 2005
    (2) World Bank 2005






For further information:

For further information: Paul Keable, Manning Selvage & Lee, (416)
847-1307

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