Friday, 9 February 2018

3 ways to fight against period poverty

 One of the best things about social media, is the ability for people to share their ideas on a much bigger platform. I was recently scrolling through my feed when I found a post about a girl named Amika George who has started a petition for girls who have free school meals to get free sanitary products. It really struck a chord with me, and I was so pleased to see someone so young campaigning for something SO important.


Growing up, I always felt incredibly self conscious whenever I was on my period. I was lucky enough to grow up in a family who could afford these products, but imagine if you had to go through a period every month without access to sanitary products. Reading more about what Amika was campaigning for made the campaign make even more sense to me, and what a brilliant idea I think it is. If the government could provide free sanitary products for girls who have free school meals, many young girls might stop missing school, or using unhygienic methods when their periods come around every month.

After some further research, I also came across Bloody Good Period, which is a charity that aims to provide sanitary products for those who can't afford them. Gabby Edlin, the brains behind Bloody Good Period, noticed that food banks and asylum seeker drop in centres were not providing sanitary products to women. Women who cannot afford sanitary products are forced to use toilet paper, or not to use anything at all which is bound to make that time of the  month even worse.

So, here are three things you can do to help stop period poverty.

1. Sign Amika's #FreePeriods petition, which you can do here. She's so close to 150,000 signatures!

2. Donate money to, or volunteer for, Bloody Good Period.

3. Write to your local MP about the petition. Here's a template of what I sent to my local MP!

Dear X,

I am local resident and wanted to email you about a campaign I think you might be interested in.

Recently, I came across the #FreePeriods campaign which aims to get free menstrual products for all children on free school meals. Please see below for a link to the petition.

https://www.change.org/p/theresa-may-mp-free-menstrual-products-for-all-children-on-free-school-meals-freeperiods

I think this is a fantastic petition, and wondered if there was something you could do about this - perhaps there is a local school that might be able to trial this campaign. As a young woman, I feel very strongly about the importance of this campaign. Whilst I recognise that it might take some years for this scheme to come into practice, it would be great to know that my local MP is aware of the petition.

Periods are bad enough without having to worry about whether you have access to sanitary products.

Please let me know your thoughts.

Thank you in advance.

X

Whilst this is a brief template, and you may want to send something entirely your own, I've had a response from one of the MP's I contacted who is now aware of the campaign which is progress in itself. Hopefully the more people that email their local MP's, the more people who learn more about tackling the issue of period poverty.

If you have any ideas on how I can fight against period poverty, I'd love to know what else I could be doing!
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2 comments

  1. Thanks for sharing this Hannah. Period poverty is definitely something that should be acknowledged, and we should be doing more to help stop it. The template is so useful - I will be contacting my local MP x

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    Replies
    1. I agree Georgia, I think more should be done across the UK as it is a huge issue xx

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