A new government scheme that hopes to tackle period poverty receives mixed reviews from charities in Kent

KIEV, UKRAINE - 2018/10/26: Always Ultra Pads seen in store. Always is a brand of feminine hygiene products, including maxi pads, ultra thin pads, pantiliner, and feminine wipes, produced by Procter & Gamble. (Photo by Igor Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

On Monday the government rolled out a national scheme in an attempt to tackle period poverty in schools.

The new programme will allow schools to order a range of free sanitary products to avoid children missing out on their education. 

While many have applauded the government on their new scheme, some have criticised that this move should have been made a lot sooner. 

Period Poverty is a national charity that has distributed more than 5 million sanitary towels to food banks, refugee camps and homeless shelters since it was set up in 2013. 

Their chair and founder, Dr Zareen Roohi says it shouldn’t have taken the government this long to take action. 

She said: “It’s a step in the right direction but it’s just one step. It should have been done a long time ago.

“I don’t think it’s a cause for them to pat themselves on the back.”

Alongside the Period Poverty charity, there have also been other organisations that have been campaigning to put an end to the issue, including the Red Box Project which aims to provide students and with sanitary donations. 

Labour Dartford Cllr Kelly Grehan applied for a Dartford Red Box Project three years ago and has since been collecting donations and distributing them to schools and youth clubs. 

Alongside other campaigners, Cllr Grehan has praised the new government scheme that could help many children living in period poverty and also take the pressure off of schools that have resulted in setting up their own inhouse schemes. 

Cllr Grehan said: “This is something that will help a lot of girls.

“Having a period is horrible when you’re a young girl anyway a lot of the time. It’s embarrassing and painful.

“Anything we can do to make that girls life better, I think as a society we have a duty to do that.

“That’s one of the many reasons why I applaud this scheme. “

Older generations have contacted Cllr Grehan since the Red Box Project came to Dartford about the lasting effects that period poverty has had on them.

She added: “The fact that memory has stayed with them so acutely after all this time shows the kind of impact it has, that that memory is something that still plays on their mind 20, 30, 40 years later.

“So let’s not have anymore girls growing up with them memories.”

The Red Box Project has been working alongside Medway food bank who also help to supply those living in poverty with sanitary products as well as other basic hygienic items.

Lorraine Schulze, project manager of Medway food bank, recognises that the scheme will benefit young people living in period poverty.

However she wants to remind others that there will still be many women affected by period poverty and seeking sanitary products from charities and food banks.

Lorraine said: “This roll out will obviously mean it’s probably easier for schools to access those resources and that it doesn’t have to come out of their already tight budgets.

“But I’d just like to stress that while the government’s going to be providing free products to schools, we are still supporting older ladies who are going to be needing ongoing support.”

So, while the government has made a step in the right direction to ending period poverty, there will still be a need for charities and organisations to support the many women who won’t benefit from the national scheme. 

Be the first to comment on "A new government scheme that hopes to tackle period poverty receives mixed reviews from charities in Kent"

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.