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The inspiring women behind the period movement

Elena Peratikos, Senior Account Manager on the Consumer Health & Beauty team, reports on her work with Holland & Barrett to help fight period poverty.

Shockingly, one in four women in the UK cannot afford period products, in some cases causing absences at school or at work due to not having access to any form of sanitary products.

Whilst for most of us, adding our period product of choice – whether it be tampons, pads or cups to our shopping trolleys is a habit that comes without thinking – sadly for some women, this isn’t such a mindless ritual.

‘Choice’ is the key word here, for those of us who can afford period essentials it is a luxury that we probably don’t realise that we have.

With the cost of living rising and the average period spend in a women’s lifetime costing £4,800, period poverty is showing no sign of slowing doen.  Period Poverty isn’t just a UK issue, it is global. In Malawi, a pack of sanitary pads costs more than a whole day’s pay. This can mean for some women that their monthly period could cost them two days wages. Whilst the money is a dominant factor,it isn’t just about the money.  In some places there are simply no tampons or pads available in local shops or communities – either due to cultural stigma or practicalities of manufacturing and shipping. 

Recognising the cause for concern, activists such as Amika George are working extremely hard to fight period poverty and spread the word on the seriousness of the issue globally. Amika George is 19-year-old student who started #freeperiods form her bedroom when she was 17. She has already had global recognition included being listed by TIME magazine as one of the top 25 influential teenagers in the world.

Amika’s efforts and #freeperiods campaign are already making positive headway with the UK government, which as of March this year pledged to offer free menstrual products for all students in all schools and colleges in England.  

More recently, health and beauty retailer Holland & Barrett has collaborated with Bloody Good Period, a UK charity whose mission is to end period poverty. Bloody Good Period’ work with women from all backgrounds including asylum seekers, homeless women and those who are poverty-stricken.

Holland & Barrett has been supporting Bloody Good Period by regularly making donations of sanitary products, and launching a media campaign dedicated to raising the profile of period poverty. 

Gabby Edlin, Founder & CEO of Bloody Good Period says: “Periods don’t stop because you’re a refugee, or because you can’t afford to buy a pad. That’s why partnerships with companies like Holland & Barrett are so important in helping to alleviate period poverty on-the-ground and – vitally – fighting to eradicate it completely.”

For me, I feel humbled to be involved in genuinely making a difference to the women all over the world. Here’s to a world where period poverty no longer exists!

For further information on how you can help Bloody Good Period do more good work, please visit their website https://www.bloodygoodperiod.com/

*https://www.actionaid.org.uk/about-us/what-we-do/womens-economic-empowerment/period-poverty

is a Senior Account Manager in the Beauty team. She has five year’s communications experience in beauty, fashion and lifestyle.