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Ending period poverty in East Suffolk

Posted by on 13 June 2019 | Comments

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As part of a scheme inspired by students in Felixstowe, free sanitary products are now being made available through community venues across East Suffolk.

Earlier this year, students from Felixstowe Academy began a campaign in school to end period poverty.The ‘Proud, Period!’ campaign aims to support young women by making free sanitary products available within school. As a result of this work, the school now has six boxes containing sanitary products available for pupils to use; toilets containing the boxes are marked with a red glitter heart on the door.

Inspired by the ‘Proud, Period!’ campaign, councillors at the former Suffolk Coastal District Council began a similar scheme, targeting the wider area. Entitled ‘Period Poverty’, the scheme is now being introduced throughout East Suffolk and local businesses, community groups and organisations are encouraged to get involved.

‘PP Boxes’, containing a variety of individually wrapped sanitary items, are being rolled out to some East Suffolk locations over the coming weeks, including community centres, food banks and sports centres. Locations supporting the scheme will display an East Suffolk Period Poverty sticker, indicating the premises has a PP Box on site.

Cllr Letitia Smith, East Suffolk Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities, Leisure and Tourism said: “Having been inspired by the pupils from Felixstowe Academy, our district-wide campaign will provide sanitary products to girls and women across East Suffolk should they need them. We are grateful to those community locations who have already requested to help the scheme and we are delighted that PP Boxes will be available in those places shortly.

“To ensure the boxes are available in a wide variety of towns and villages across East Suffolk, we need more businesses and venues to get involved, either as box holders or as suppliers for the products in future. We are also able to provide support to other schools who may be interested in creating their own campaign to end period poverty.”

A new website (www.eastsuffolkperiodpoverty.com) will be launched on 1 July, enabling people to search for their nearest PP box as well as other local initiatives, and providing information and other resources.

Businesses, organisations and schools interested in joining the scheme are asked to contact Chloe Winlow at info@eastsuffolkperiodpoverty.com

The PP Boxes will be replenished by East Suffolk Norse for the time-being however donations are very welcome. Donations can be brought to East Suffolk House in Melton, Riverside in Lowestoft or given directly to your nearest PP Box holder. The boxes are currently stocked with products from TOTM, which are made from biodegradable organic cotton, however donations from all manufacturers are welcome.