‘Girls often have to go to school with no pads’
In the small community where Florence, 17, lives in Rwanda, periods are a taboo subject. But as part of the youth club at her school she’s been learning about her sexual health and reproductive rights.
“I didn’t know anything about my body and how it develops before I joined the youth club,” she says. “I have learnt a lot now, about periods and health issues and how to look after myself.
“Girls often have to go to school with no pads during their periods and feel very ashamed. Some girls even quit school because of this. I wish that each girl and boy could learn about sexual and reproductive health and rights.”
‘When we first arrived, they didn’t have anything’
For girls growing up in crisis, getting your period can make already challenging conditions even harder.
Nurankis and Nur Nahar are both living in Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh, having fled the violence in Myanmar. As well as the stigmas surrounding periods in their community, they also face a constant shortage of pads or clean cloths.
That’s why our teams have been distributing dignity kits, including washable cloths which can be reused and won’t clog the rudimentary toilets in the camps.
BREAKING THE BARRIERS IN THE UK
A CULTURE OF SHAME AND SILENCE
“I do feel like there’s a stigma around the topic of periods. If people spoke about periods more without the stigma, it could help a lot of people.” - Jess, 17, UK
Our first-of-its-kind report, Break the Barriers, explores UK girls’ experiences of having their period. It reveals a culture of shame and silence has turned periods into a hidden public health issue – putting girls' physical, sexual and mental health at risk.
OUR PERIOD EMOJI IS ON ITS WAY!
We’re celebrating the amazing news that – thanks to your incredible support – our blood drop emoji design, developed in partnership with NHS Blood, is now appearing on phones everywhere!
That means people will be able to talk about periods using one of the fastest growing global languages, helping to break down the shame and stigma still associated with getting your period around the world.
Why education is critical in solving the toxic trio of period poverty.
There’s a hidden health story surrounding periods that we can’t afford to ignore.
We're part of an exciting new initiative, committed to ending period poverty.
This International Women’s Day, we’re celebrating change-makers.