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Health and Fitness

A Feminine Hygiene Brand Is Donating 200,000 Sanitary Products To Help Combat Period Poverty

by Helen Turnbull Published on 23 March 2017

Teenage girls are fashioning tampons out of socks and tissues because they can't afford proper sanitary products, it was found last week. In light of the so-called 'period poverty' epidemic, one feminine hygiene brand is donating 200,000 to those in need in the hope of combating the issue.

Last week it was revealed young girls are skipping school during their periods to save themselves embarrassment as they can't afford proper feminine hygiene products. The sorry state of affairs came to light after a Leeds school contacted charity Freedom4Girls - who provide the essential items to women and girls in Kenya - about their concern over female pupils' depleting attendance levels.

Two teenagers from Leeds revealed the reality of not being able to buy proper tampons and sanitary towels, telling the BBC the desperate measures they're forced to resort to every month. One said: "I wrapped a sock around my underwear just to stop the bleeding because I didn't want to get shouted at. And I wrapped a whole tissue roll around my underwear, just to keep my underwear dry until I got home. I once Sellotaped tissue to my underwear. I didn't know what else to do."

But Bodyform hopes to help stop girls taking unnecessary breaks from their education by donating 200,000 sanitary products to those girls and women who don't have the means to buy them themselves. The brand is working with Prince Charles' charity In Kind Direct to distribute 200,000 free packs of Ultra Normal Wings Towels to charities up and down the country who support women and girls affected by various issues, including homelessness, poverty and domestic violence. Bodyform has pledged to have completed the full donation by 2020.

The company's marketing director Nicola Coronado hopes rival brands will join the movement and pledge their support to the cause. She said: “Alongside campaigns such as The Homeless Period, we can overcome the taboo of talking about menstruation while ensuring sanitary products are reaching those most in need.”

In addition to Bodyform's donation, a petition calling on Education Secretary Justine Greening to campaign for the Government to make UK schools provide free sanitary products has amassed almost 50,000 signatures. On Monday, Greening pledged to "look carefully" at the issue.

You can sign the petition here.

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by Helen Turnbull

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