With Modess and Miss Universe Philippines, the beauty queen and female empowerment activist speaks up
It’s been a few weeks since the reigning Miss Universe, Harnaaz Kaur Sandh, visited Manila for the first time to grace the much anticipated Miss Universe Philippines 2022 coronation night. The 21-year-old Indian beauty queen, along with Modess, also made known her main advocacy—menstrual equity—encouraging and educating young Filipinas to take charge of their menstrual health.
For Harnaaz, this cause is close to her heart, especially because she grew up with a mom who works as a gynecologist. This continues to pave the way for her to use her global platform to shed light on menstrual equity, which “in the simplest way, means to have affordable, accessible and safe feminine products, and to educate young women about their reproductive health,” as she puts it.
The reigning Miss Universe narrates: “My mom, being a gynecologist, has been the woman [in] my life who taught me about women’s health issues…I have watched her empowering women my entire life, working towards breaking the [patriarchal] system within my community. And empowering…women in my country to know their bodies and find help when needed when doors were not open for them.”
Along with Modess, the reigning Miss Universe, Harnaaz Kaur Sandhu, encourages young Filipinas to take charge of their menstrual health.
Though menstruating is such a normal occurrence, many women still feel ashamed to talk about this reality. Harnaaz Kaur Sandh exclaims, “Don’t let that stain, stain your mind!” Keeping your menstrual hygiene and health in check, especially during your red days, allows you to take on new challenges and follow your dreams, the same way the reigning Miss Universe has.
This March, Miss Universe Harnaaz Kaur Sandhu has also launched a coalition and social impact alliance, which aims to provide personal hygiene products for women suffering from period poverty. With this, she hopes to transform “period poverty to period powerty.”
Art Chelsy Estrada