If you’ve been following me for a while you’ll know that talking openly and honestly with you all, is something I always try to do. So today I’ve teamed up with Plan International USA, to raise awareness about period poverty and the stigma that still exists around discussing menstruation.
Each day, more than 800 million people around the world have their periods, yet many face significant barriers to managing their periods safely and easily due to the stigma surrounding speaking openly and honestly about menstruation.
Why is this important? Because some people in the USA :
1.) Can't afford the period products they need – this is called period poverty
2.) Don't have access to private bathrooms or safe ways to dispose of products
3.) Don't understand what they're going through and how to best manage their periods
4.) Face discrimination or prejudice because of period stigma.
I bet if you’re reading this you can tell me at least one story of a time in your life when you’ve experienced first hand the stigma that surrounds chatting about your period openly and honestly. I also bet; you probably have a really amazing story to tell about a time in your life when you’ve been able to accomplish something truly awesome while on your period! That’s because chatting about menstruation isn't something we should feel scared or ashamed to do. In fact, openly discussing it is the best way to safely educate others, and to encourage others to ask questions they otherwise may feel uncomfortable to do. The first step in ending the stigma, is for us all to start talking.
I’ll go first; Some amazing things I’ve been able to do while on my period include, shoot some of my most dynamic movement photos for some really fun campaigns and compete in States with my track and field team in college, and place in two separate events. There’s an endless amount of wonderful things you can do while on your period, but unfortunately some people don’t have access to education on menstruation, or due to the stigma surrounding chatting about it, don’t feel like they can chat about it with their friends, mentors, or even members of their family. Let’s work together to change this.
So you may be wondering what you can do to enact change?
The first thing we are already doing! Chatting about it. End the stigma by talking openly with others like we are doing here today.
But at the end of the day for real change to happen, bills need to be passed, I would like to encourage you all to sign a petition today to show your support for ending period poverty in the USA.