Periods might be tough to talk about sometimes, but they are just a fact of life. Monthly menstruation products are a basic necessity. Nobody should have to pick between feeding their family and being able to afford basic hygiene products. But if you’re living in poverty, access to products can be challenging. For homeless youth or women living on the street – it’s even more challenging. For other people, there are challenges when you consider cultural differences, gender identify, or just the stigma around having a period at all.
Too many young girls and other vulnerable kids are missing days at school because they don’t have period products – in fact nearly 1 in 7 Canadian girls have missed school due to lack of period protection (Confidence and Puberty Study by Always, Proctor & Gamble, 2018). Almost one quarter of Canadian women say they have struggled to afford menstrual products for themselves or their children (Plan International, Period Stigma Report, 2018).
The Period Promise campaign by United Way is mobilizing public opinion about “period poverty.” Local governments, like the City of Victoria, school boards across B.C., the labour sector, like BC Federation of Labour and Canadian Labour Congress, Pacific Region, have all taken a period promise to provide menstrual products for free in their facilities, just like they supply toilet paper.
For the third year in a row, United Way Greater Victoria is aiming to fill a bus with unopened boxes of pads, tampons and diva cups. These products are then distributed to local United Way funded social service agencies to help people in need. In 2019 over 66,000 individual products were donated to United Way. This year’s goal is 100,000 individual products!
Elements of Health is going to help.
This week, when you come for your appointments, please consider bringing unopened boxes of menstrual products to help others in need. We will be delivering all donations on Saturday at United Way’s Collect product or, simply drop your contributions on March 7 and help fill that bus!
Period Promise – Fill the bus
Saturday, March 7, 2020, 11 am to 3 pm
Hillside Centre parking lot, North Dairy Street