United Way is prepping for our Period Promise collection – are you ready?
United Way’s Period Promise Collection Drive runs May 6th-June 3rd
If you’ve been helping out with United Way’s Period Promise campaign for a few years now you know it usually runs in March. However, given the current state of COVID-19, we’re running the campaign a few months later this year. On the plus side, this will line up our campaign with World Menstrual Hygiene Day on May 28th!
Here are a few things that you can look forward to with this year’s campaign
- Easier ways to donate financially or with physical product in your community, where you work, or within your networks
- New ways to highlight your commitment to the cause or get involved as a leader in the local effort
- Virtual engagement opportunities with local activists and leaders working to address the issue of period poverty and menstrual equity in British Columbia sharing key insights and strategies
- Information sharing highlighting the results of the Period Promise Research Project and the work being done by partners on the Period Promise Community Action Group!
Making a Difference in Squamish, North Vancouver, and East Van
In November and December, the Period Promise team at United Way wanted to try out a new way to collect and distribute free menstrual products in our neighbourhoods. We wanted it to be as safe and accessible as possible, and had some amazing volunteers help build and test a new strategy. Thankfully the idea worked!
With the help of Kaleena in Squamish, Renee in East Vancouver, and Taylor in North Vancouver, we collected and distributed more than 15,000 tampons, pads, menstrual cups, and other necessary supplies to 7 agencies right in the neighbourhoods where they were donated. The impact of the donation was immediate and provided essential support to our community in a time of heightened need. See a snapshot of that impact in this article about Kaleena’s collection in Squamish!
Does this sound like the right way for you to get involved in the Period Promise campaign in 2021? We’ve still got some kinks to work out, but watch for updates over the coming months where you can sign up to be a collection lead in your neighbourhood.
City of Richmond jumps on board
Despite the challenges that come with the pandemic, work on advancing access to menstrual products in public spaces continues to push forward in 2021 with two quick wins.
The first big advance was in Richmond, where council converted a motion to pilot a project to the development and implementation of a permanent plan. Laura, a Richmond resident, HSA member, and Community Action Group member was in attendance at the virtual meeting and spoke to the effort. “Providing menstrual products sends a message to people who menstruate that their health and presence and participation in the community is valued and supported.” After her exciting success, Laura is already helping some of her friends figure out how to advance the effort with their local councils.
The second win was with the Town of Valemount, which will be providing free menstrual products in all of their public facilities. Valemount is by far the smallest community to join the movement in BC, but their contribution to the effort will have a big impact on residents in their community.
Curious about how to get involved, or want to see your municipality provide free products for everybody who menstruates in your public facilities? Get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get you connected to the movement.