THOUSANDS of students can now benefit from access to free period products at Solent University, thanks to Solent Students’ Union.
Stefania David, VP Education at Solent Students’ Union, has been working hard to get free tampons and pads in university toilets, as part of her Go With The Flow campaign.
The products were supplied by Grace & Green, an eco-friendly and organic period product brand.
A recent study by Action Aid UK found that 28% of people who had a period in the last 12 months (aged 16-24) reported having avoided or missed school, college, or university in the last year because of their periods.
The report also stated that nearly half (46%) struggled to afford sanitary products in the last six months and kept sanitary pads or tampons in for longer than recommended or used tissues (46%) as a substitute.
Stefania said: “Period poverty can affect anyone who menstruates and access to menstrual products should be an essential, not a luxury. They are an everyday item for anyone who bleeds and must be easily accessible for all.
“This is not just a potential health risk if people can’t afford to change regularly, it can also mean students’ education and wellbeing can be affected, and I can’t sit back and watch this happen. No one should be held back because of their period. Students should be focusing on their education, not if they can afford sanitary products this month.”
Four vending machines have been installed across the female, male, unisex and disabled toilets on the ground floor of The Spark, at Solent University. The machine will dispense pads and applicator tampons for free and with ease.
Alongside this, baskets full of period products will be available in toilets across other Solent University owned buildings, such as Solent Library and St Mary’s campus, well as the Students’ Union’s SU Exchange.
Stefania added: “The aim of my campaign is to support all students who menstruate and take away the stress of student’s worrying about if they need to cut back on a food shop or not buy period products this month. I want to thank Grace & Green and Solent University for helping me with this.
“Solent Students’ Union is aware that the cost-of-living crisis, soaring inflation and rocketing energy bills have many students prioritising other household essentials over products like sanitary products, which is why we launched the SU Exchange, our community pantry that also supplies free period products, books, and condoms for students.”
Tampons with and without applicators, pads and organic bamboo liners are also available in the SU Exchange.
The Go With The Flow campaign at Solent Students’ Union is part of the national #EndPeriodPoverty campaign. More information can be found at www.solentsu.co.uk.
If you would like to donate period products to the Go With The Flow campaign, please email email@example.com.