Monmouthshire County Council order over 5,000 period products from social enterprise Hey Girls ahead of students returning to school in September.
In April 2019 the Welsh Government launched the Period Dignity Grant allowing schools to provide period products freely for their students. A Plan UK study conducted in 2018 found that 1 in 10 girls and women are living in period poverty, unable to afford or access products from month to month. The grant means that no pupil will be caught short at school and can have a safe and dignified period.
Cllr Sara Jones, Cabinet Member for Social Justice and Community Development said: “Making sure that all girls and young people can easily access period products is a key part of Monmouthshire County Council’s social justice work, which is why this funding from Welsh Government has been so essential to buy products to distribute through schools as well as other venues like Food Banks.”
Social enterprise Hey Girls launched in 2018 manufacturing, chemical free and sustainable period products operating on a buy one give one model, for each product sold, one is donated to someone in need across the UK. Alongside Monmouthshire County Council, Hey Girls is providing period products to go to schools across the local authority.
The council were particularly interested in providing more sustainable and reusable options for period care, acknowledging the wider environmental impact of period products. Hey Girls has a range of reusable products from medical grade silicone menstrual cups to reusable pads and period pants.
Cllr Jane Pratt, Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Neighbourhood Services added: “Monmouthshire County Council is constantly working towards becoming plastic free, so making sure that the products we distribute are as eco-friendly as possible has been really important to us.”
Celia Hodson, Founder Hey Girls said: “We’re thrilled to be working with Monmouthshire County Council to make period products available to Welsh school pupils. We believe access to period products is a right and not a privilege, by offering free products in an educational setting means that students can access period products easily and with dignity, and do not miss out on education because they are on their period.”