Sophia Bush is fighting to end “period poverty”—here’s an easy way to help her

Nothing should stand between girls and their education—especially not their periods. For young girls, navigating their changing bodies is stressful enough without the added strain of missing school because they don’t have the necessary products to deal with their period. When Aunt Flo comes to town, no one should have to worry about where they can find a tampon or pad so that they can go to class.

Access to period products should not be a privilege; it should be a right. Sophia Bush knows this, which is why she’s partnering with Always to end period poverty in the United States. And yes, Brooke Davis is cheering all the way from Tree Hill.

What exactly is period poverty?

Period poverty refers to the issue of young girls not having access to adequate period care. According to the Always Confidence & Puberty Local Market Study, almost one in five girls in the U.S. have missed school due to lack of access to period products. To put this number in perspective, it includes 143,000 girls in the New York City area and 88,000 girls in the Los Angeles area.

“Period poverty is a real, devastating issue, and it creates gender disparity and inequality that lasts for so many decades,” Bush told Refinery29.

“Period poverty is a financial and socioeconomic issue, but the stigma around all of us in society means we don't talk about people whose periods place them in precarious positions, Bush said. “We need to make sure that we stop treating periods and women’s bodies like this taboo subject. There are women on their cycle everywhere, every day and we need to treat it as such. We need to treat it as a simple, normal fact of life.

To fight this prevalent issue, Always launched its #EndPeriodPoverty campaign in 2018, donating more than 20 million period products to young girls in the U.S. last year. This year, Always partnered with the Feeding America network of food banks and is aiming to provide even more period products to keep girls in school, no matter when their period might unexpectedly arrive.

How can we support this important cause?

There are a few ways you can do your part to #EndPeriodPoverty. First, you can buy a pack of Always pads at participating retailers. This equals a pad donation to the Feeding America network. Second, for each like or comment on #EndPeriodPoverty social media posts on Always accounts or influencer accounts, Always will donate an additional pad to a girl in need, up to a total donation of 1 million period products. Finally, spread the #EndPeriodPoverty hashtag on Instagram and Twitter to continue raising awareness on this issue. Watch one girl’s story below.

Emily represents thousands of girls experiencing period poverty across the United States. Let’s work to #EndPeriodPoverty together.

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