In a groundbreaking achievement, Pakistan-based cleantech startup She-Guard emerged victorious at the ‘ClimateLaunchpad Asia-Pacific’ finals, showcasing their innovative biodegradable and plastic-free sanitary product. The startup’s mission is to transform banana crop waste into affordable, eco-friendly sanitary napkins, addressing the interconnected challenges of climate change, public health and solid waste management in Pakistan.
She-Guard faced stiff competition with 172 other teams from six countries in the Asia-Pacific in the finals. The event hosted by national partner Centre4 Creativity & Sustainability, and funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland (Irish Aid), served as a platform for climate innovators to present their solutions.
She-Guard’s Impactful Solution
The jury recognized She-Guard for its realistic and scalable business plan, acknowledging its potential to significantly impact both sustainability and the socio-economic circumstances of women globally. The startup’s commitment to providing affordable and sustainable menstrual hygiene products aligns with the fundamental right of all women to manage their periods hygienically.
Mehreen Raza, the founder and CEO of She-Guard, expressed gratitude for the support of ClimateLaunchpad and emphasized the importance of ensuring that every woman can access basic menstrual hygiene. Raza highlighted the startup’s dedication to achieving this goal in a sustainable manner.
Addressing a Global Issue
The use of plastic and chemical-based sanitary napkins affects approximately 23 million women in Pakistan alone. Globally, tens of millions of women encounter challenges in managing their periods due to the unavailability or unaffordability of essential sanitary products. She-Guard’s innovative approach aims to tackle this pressing issue on a broader scale.
ClimateLaunch Pad, organized by Europe’s leading climate innovation initiative, EIT Climate-KIC, stands as the world’s largest green business competitive for climate innovators. Since 2013, the program has provided a vibrant program for individuals passionate about making a positive difference by developing climate solutions through entrepreneurship.
Vietnamese startup Alterno secured the runner-up position with its low-cost thermal energy storage solution for renewable energy, designed for the drying of agricultural products like tea, coffee and rice. Japanese startup Aonbarr claimed the third spot with an innovative idea using seawater to generate hydrogen as a green energy source.