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Period poverty is much more common in our community than you would think. Half of all people who menstruate say that they have struggled to purchase product for themselves at some time in their life, and more than a quarter have gone through a period without having any products to support them.

People are missing school or leaving work, and too many people face the additional challenges of homelessness, living with a disability, or just the stigma around having a period at all.

Period Promise Northumberland, a program of United Way Northumberland supported by Thrive Northumberland, is committed to making it easier for everybody to access the menstrual products they need. Since its launch in 2020, Period Promise Northumberland has made a significant impact by distributing over 50,000 menstrual hygiene products to individuals, families, and non-profit organizations within our local area. 

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menstrual hygiene products distributed locally.

Every time you donate tampons, pads, cups, or underwear, you’re not just providing products – you’re also helping to raise awareness, break down stigma, and support those affected by period poverty. Your financial support enables us to purchase more menstrual products, extending the reach of your donation to ensure that people in need have access to a greater variety of options.

Are you a local, not-for-profit organization in need of menstrual products for your clients?

In 2022, Period Promise Northumberland asked community members to anonymously share how period poverty impacts their lives in order to get a better understand of menstruation and equitable access to menstrual products in Northumberland County. The data was collected to form a report on period poverty and equitable access. The survey results are based on 79 Northumberland County residents aged 12-65+.

Period Promise Recipient

“I’ve missed work because the only thing to use was folded up toilet paper, I need to change that very often and am afraid of moving and having it fall down my pant leg. I’ve even lost jobs because I take time off once a month.”

The Squishy Goose, a Period Promise partner.

“Joining with The United Way Northumberland & Thrive Northumberland on the Period Promise initiative has been so rewarding! The response from our community has been overwhelmingly positive, supportive, and grateful that we are shining a light on an issue that often feels overlooked. It is our hope to spread awareness and reduce stigma around the topic of period poverty (and menstruation in general) each and every day at the playground, so future generations consider it a neutral, commonplace public health matter that affects all families – regardless of gender, income, location or ethnicity. No one should experience barriers to basic hygiene products.”

Cobourg Public Library, a Period Promise partner

“We are proud to have partnered with Period Promise Northumberland to help end period poverty. Each month, six public washrooms and one staff washroom containing up to 20-period products are re-filled, sometimes more than once a day. Many times, in a month, we provide over 120 products to those in need. In a year, that is over 1,440 products. The need is there, and we’re thrilled to be a part of the effort in Cobourg, to provide free menstrual products. We are proud to continue to be a donation drop-off location year-round for products.”

For more information about Period Promise, please contact Chelsea Rankin.

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