Tuesday, 25 Feb 2020 11:52 GMT

The UNsanitary side of period poverty

A campaign, which included a 24-page print feature, was launched to raise awareness of the unsanitary means women have to go to due to period poverty.

According to Compassion UK, one in ten girls in the UK between the ages of 14 and 21 have been unable to afford sanitary products, while 49% have missed an entire day of school because of their period.

With the topic of menstruation still a taboo for many, being unable to afford necessary sanitary products can be embarrassing and leave women and girls feeling ashamed.

As a result and rather than seeking support or help, these women will sometimes resort to using unhygienic and unsafe methods such as socks or newspaper.

To raise awareness of this widespread issue, social enterprise, Hey Girls, and communications agency, adam&eveDDB, created an UNsanitary range. This featured realistic sanitary product packaging which were distributed across special pop-ups in selected ASDA stores.

Progress is being made, but we knew we needed to do something drastic for large numbers of people to take notice of what so many women and girls are going through

The packaging, which was not actually for sale, instead held examples of the products some women are forced to use.

The firms also partnered with The Big Issue. The social change publication created a 24-page special magazine about periods, menstrual products, poverty, activism and the environment.

Celia Hodson, founder of Hey Girls comments: “We created ‘UNsanitary’ to provoke awareness about the shocking extent of period poverty in the UK.

“Progress is being made, but we knew we needed to do something drastic for large numbers of people to take notice of what so many women and girls are going through. We hope the campaign will rally businesses and the government to instigate more radical changes.”



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