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How can you support other menstruators?

 

Want to support period powerful causes and help menstruators everywhere? Here are ways you can make a difference!

 
Did you know?
 

  • It takes an average of 7.5 years to diagnose conditions such as Endometriosis
  • Plastic ridden period care products can stay in landfill and oceans for up to 500 years
  • One in ten girls have been unable to afford period care products
  •  
    These shocking statistics are hard to ignore and they shouldn’t be ignored! These are just a handful of things that are affecting menstruators everywhere. It’s a sad reality that for too long menstruation has been a taboo topic. It has allowed problems to grow under the surface, silently affecting millions of people and impacting their quality of life.

     
    There is a need for change and the good thing is, it’s starting to happen! Thanks to individuals and organisations operating all over the world, there is a growing awareness and a demand for action.

     
    But what can you do to help?

     

    How you can support and get involved

     
    If you’re sat there reading this feeling inspired, yet unsure how you can be part of this movement, then this blog is 100% for you. We’ve put together a list of how you can support the cause and help make a difference.

     
    Here are a few of our ideas to get you started:

     

    Sign the petitions

     
    There are many petitions actively running focused on menstruation or period products. Each started by an inspirational pioneer who is campaigning for change. These are a few we recommend checking out:
     

  • Improving menstrual wellbeing education in schools (started by Alice Smith)
  • Make all menstrual products plastic-free (started by Ella Daish)
  • #FreePeriods (started by Amika George)
  •  
    Check out these petitions and show your support for causes that you feel passionate about. Or take matters into your own hand by starting your own petition! On starting up her petition, Ella Daish told us, “I kept thinking how many, like me, aren’t even aware of this problem. Subsequently, this led me to start the petition to make all these products plastic free and biodegradable, and to raise awareness of this issue.” Ella’s campaign has racked up over 100,000 signatures.

     

    Donate your products

     
    Whilst petitions are running to tackle period poverty, there are also initiatives running across the UK to help people who cannot access products. So, if you have spare products or want to buy a bundle of product to donate do not hesitate to contact your local project!

     
    To donate products to schools, take a look at Red Box Project. They operate in locations across the UK and are run by volunteers. If you cannot find a project in your area, then you can always start one up. All info on locations, donations and getting involved is included on the RBP website.

     
    Many local causes are also run by individuals as an independent community-driven project. An example being 16-year-old Bimini Love, who runs the Street Cramps project in Cornwall. Whilst these are specific period poverty causes, another way to donate your products is to contact a local charity providing aid in your country/region. As a brand based in Wales we support Llamau, a charity providing support to homeless people across Wales. Charities such as these require products as part of their support service so really value your donations.

     

    Be part of the conversation

     
    We believe in making social media a positive place. A space to support causes, start conversations and champion others. It’s playing a key role in driving discussions about periods and menstrual health. You can get involved too! Search for hashtags on topics such as #FreePeriods, #EndPeriodPlastic and #EndTamponTax. Follow the debates, use the hashtags and be part of this growing movement.

     
    A great campaign to be aware of and get involved with is the #WhatIWishILearned campaign by Endometriosis UK. This campaign is paired with Alice Smith’s petition to improve menstrual education in schools. People across socials have been supporting the campaign and using the hashtag in a post or video talking about what they wish they learned in school. Most stories are also featured on the Endometriosis UK Instagram. Our team at TOTM got involved too, check out the video here.

     

    Say no to plastics

     
    2018 so far has been the year that we really shone a light on the global plastics problem. In the list of offending products, disposable tampons and pads have been called out. Mainstream products have been found to contain large amounts of plastics that end up in landfill or even in the oceans! From plastic applicators (every year 1.3 billion end up in UK landfill) to pads full of plastic (mainstream pads are believed to up to 90% plastic) this has been exposed as a big sustainability issue.

     
    A simple switch to an eco-friendly product can make a big difference. Even if all you can do is to ditch the plastic applicators. Check what your products are made from, look for low-impact disposables and if you’re ready, take a look at reusable period care options such as cups.

     
    This period powerful move can help future menstruators and protect the future of our planet.

     

    Look overseas

     
    These issues are not confined to the UK. There are issues prevalent all over the world. The stigma of periods is impacting menstruators everywhere. Leading to a lack of menstrual education and severe period poverty that leads to many girls skipping school because of their periods. Organisations such as Binti are on a mission to bring menstrual dignity to those working in countries such as India and Africa (as well as the UK & US).

     
    Also look at smaller, community-focused projects such as the Lixo Zero project. An environmental education program aimed at raising “public awareness of environmental issues by promoting and empowering local sustainability.” The project promotes and supports zero waste communities in Angola. Pioneer Antónia Prata supports this project and on a recent visit donated menstrual cups and reusable cloth pads (pictured as main blog image) to aid this zero-waste lifestyle. This is such an important project because in this country only 7% of families have access to the sewerage system. Due to issues such as these, waste gathers in the streets causing severe health issues in the area. Knowledge of zero-waste products and period care can have a huge impact on communities in this country!

     
    Hopefully, we’ve inspired you to be part of the movement and help to drive change. These are only a few causes. If you know of other relevant petitions or projects let us know in the comments below! Don’t forget to follow us on socials for more #PeriodPowerful updates.
     

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