New campaign to tackle period poverty in Weston

Holly Law with donations for the Red Box Project, thanks to Waitrose's token scheme.

Holly Law with donations for the Red Box Project, thanks to Waitrose's token scheme. - Credit: Archant

Donations of sanitary products and underwear are being collected to tackle period poverty in Weston-super-Mare.

The Red Box Project has been set up in Weston to provide sanitary protection to girls who do not have access to the toiletries at home.

The campaign has been improving attendance and helping to reduce the stigma of periods.

Holly Law, who has set up the Red Box Project, said: "Our organisation supports disadvantaged girls by tackling period poverty, with the aim of helping them stay in school throughout the month.

"To do this, we collect donations of underwear and sanitary protection from members of the public and place them into schools and places used by young women, in red plastic boxes.

"When girls are in need of products, but don't have easy access to it at home, rather than miss school, they can come to a trusted member of staff, ask for the red box, and take whatever they need to get through their period.

"That includes whole packs of different pads, and even tampons, if required for PE, for example.

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"We also provide underwear, and brown paper bags."

Holly said schools have been 'overwhelmingly positive' about the project.

One teacher said: "In our school the red box isn't just providing girls who need it with vital resources, it's also taking away the stigma of periods.

"Our girls are no longer whispering 'miss, do you have some pads?'.

"Our girls do not have to decide between buying lunch and sanitary protection. They feel loved and supported."

Holly added: "Our project is run on community kindness. We collect donations from members of the public who donate at drop off points and we take them home and redistribute them from there.

"We are looking for donation points in shops and workplaces, and for people who want to donate.

"We can supply donation points with a poster and a red plastic box, which will be collected and emptied weekly or fortnightly, or however often is needed."

There are donation points at Replenish Weston, in Meadow Street, and For All Healthy Living Centre, in Lonsdale Avenue.

If you can help, get in touch via the Red Box Project Weston on Facebook or email