SEATTLE — Eight hundred million women menstruate every day. More than half of the world’s population experiences this natural fluctuation within the body; however, there is a global health issue concerning menstruation. More than 300 million menstruators use rags, plastics, sand and ash to manage their periods because they do not have access to sanitary menstrual products. Fortunately, there are several companies fighting period poverty.
5 Companies Fighting Period Poverty
Binti Period – Binti Period is a charity that focuses on increasing accessibility to menstrual products and improving affordability. It does this by facilitating access to these products and also by training women to make their own. Binti Period also raises awareness about how to properly care for one’s body during menstruation and aims to decrease the stigma surrounding menstruation. Binti Period’s mission revolves around safety and dignity, and it organizes projects in India, Kenya, Swaziland, the United States and the United Kingdom, where its organization is based.
Freedom4Girls – Freedom4Girls plays its role in fighting period poverty by providing not only safe, disposable hygienic products, but also access to environmentally-friendly reusable pads and menstrual cups. Freedom4Girls also coordinates with almost two dozen other organizations to provide menstruators with access to menstrual products and education. It also commissions and conducts research on the impacts of period poverty.
Cora – Cora creates organic tampons and natural pads, but it also partners with other organizations to help mitigate period poverty. Cora donates a percentage of its profits to support the ZanaAfrica Foundation in Kenya. ZanaAfrica provides reproductive health education and sanitary pads to adolescent girls who do not have access to these resources. Cora also partners with Aakar Innovations in India which supports female entrepreneurs in running and managing mini-factories in which women produce affordable and environmentally sustainable pads. Aakar Innovations not only focuses on creating essential menstrual products but also employing women who would otherwise be unemployed or working within the sex trafficking industry.
Days for Girls – Along with providing period products and menstrual education, Days for Girls also works to develop global partnerships, cultivate social enterprises, mobilize volunteers and come up with sustainable solutions to fight stigma and period poverty. It conceptualized DfG (Days for Girls) kits which provide up to three years of period-related products, such as liners, pads, underwear and soap. This organization has successfully connected with more than one million girls in more than 125 countries in the name of fighting period poverty.
Lunapads – Lunapads is a female-owned business that sells reusable pads, period underwear and menstrual cups. It also has a global mission to provide access and education to girls and women worldwide through its program, Pads for Girls. Pads for Girls partners with local groups and nongovernmental organizations and has aided 17,000 menstruators in 18 countries.
Period poverty limits safety, dignity, opportunity and health. When millions of people globally have such a lack of access and education concerning menstruation, one may consider period poverty a global health crisis. Organizations like Binti Period, Freedom4Girls, Cora, Days for Girls and Lunapads make a huge impact in fighting period poverty.
– Keeley Griego