Girl Up organizes menstrual drive

Girl+Up+secretary+Jazlyn+Compton+recieves+the+products+donated+for+the+menstrual+drive.+The+donation+box+can+be+found+in+Mrs.+Duncans+room%2C+3-204%2C+where+any+students+can+bring+in+tampons%2C+pads+or+liners

photo by Greta Carrasco

Girl Up secretary Jazlyn Compton recieves the products donated for the menstrual drive. The donation box can be found in Mrs. Duncan’s room, 3-204, where any students can bring in tampons, pads or liners

One in five girls miss school due to their periods. This is not because of major mood swings or period cramps—it is simply because they cannot afford menstrual products. 

To combat “period poverty,” the Girl Up club is holding a year-long menstrual drive that will supply free period products to the clinic and student services offices for students to access. By providing easier access, the club hopes to limit the time students may lose looking for products. They also hope to spread awareness on the topic of period poverty by putting posters around campus and inside each bathroom stall to show students there are resources available for use.

“I noticed that it’s really hard to find free access to menstrual products. Usually some bathrooms will have dispensers, but our school doesn’t,” Girl Up secretary Jazlyn Compton said. “We were really looking at the lack of accessibility of the products and thinking ‘How can we solve this?’”

Many women spend around $50 each cycle, which means they are expected to spend around $22,500 over the course of their lifetimes on pads or tampons alone. Because of this, Girl Up has decided to help out women who may not be able to afford these products.

However, the club faced various struggles putting this idea into motion, such as finding a legal way to get these resources available for distribution. Their first idea was to set up small containers in the bathrooms filled with supplies, but this plan was rejected due to worries over misbehavior and waste of the products. The club then came up with the idea of placing tampon dispensers, but they were too expensive. Eventually, the club’s officers and administrators agreed to put products in the clinic and student service offices.

The group faced another problem when a teacher reported the posters to administration, thinking they were not approved. After bringing the posters back to administration, they were checked and allowed to go back up.

“Frasca did say that we had to ask for permission, but I feel like that’s even more of a motivator to [spread the word],” Compton said. “We are putting up these posters and saying, ‘Hey, there’s actually nothing wrong with this.’”
As of now, they have received three boxes of tampons, four boxes of pads and one box of liners. Students interested in donating can go to club sponsor Julie Duncan’s room in 3-204.

“It’s nice to know that your student body is supporting you and that Hagerty has such a great environment that is willing to grow,” Duncan said.

In the future, Girl Up plans to collaborate with the Muslim Student Association and sell stickers to raise funds for Women for Women, an organization that will help girls in Afghanistan get the resources they need and find a way to advocate for their right to education.

“[Girl Up members] are passionate and organized and they just want to make a difference. They are just a fabulous group of students,” Duncan said.

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