Act 3: Period Poverty

I live in Singapore so waiting for today’s #40acts challenge to come through on email was excruciating. Being 8 hours ahead means not only being patient (not something I have a lot of) but also means I have much less time to complete a challenge.

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International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day. International Women’s Day (‘IWD’) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.

The UN Women’s Global theme for IWD in 2019 is ‘Think equal, build smart, innovate for change’, linking with the UN Commission on the Status of Women’s focus on social protection, public services and sustainable infrastructure.

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Period Poverty

Today’s act was finally delivered into my inbox at 2.02pm. It was about helping to eliminate period poverty and Rachel Jobes wrote:

Many young girls are missing school on a regular basis because they’re suffering from period poverty. On average, it costs £13 a month to buy sanitary products, and for some hard-pressed households, that’s just too much. Food or heating has to come first. The stats are shocking. According to Plan International UK, 1 in 10 girls can’t afford sanitary products and over 137,700 children have missed school because of period poverty; 40% have used toilet roll as a substitute.   

There were the usual green, yellow red options for action and they were as follows:

  1. Spend some time looking into local groups that give free sanitary care to schools. 
  1. Go shopping. And drop off a package in a donation box in your local area.
  1. Do your bit to educate. Get the word out on social media – even though it’s awkward.

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What did I do?

I chose the red option (3) as it was the easiest for me in Singapore. I immediately created a Facebook post and shared it with friends. I shared the contents of the #40acts email with a WhatsApp Political discussion group with about 100 members. I also created this blogpost.

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What can you do?

There is always someone in need of help with sanitary products. If you can, buy an extra supply when you’re next out shopping and donate it. It will be appreciated.