Alberta’s government is investing $260,000 in Period Promise to improve menstrual care and provide period products to youth in need.
Period Promise — a United Way initiative — in partnership with the province, is providing free menstrual products in 50 schools across Alberta. Funding will go towards installing period product dispensers in bathrooms and toward an educational campaign.
United Way Central Alberta has already been tackling period poverty throughout the region this year.
“We are eager to partner with the Government of Alberta and United Ways province wide to expand Period Promise school pilots,” said CEO Chelsea O’Donoghue, in a statement.
She said data from its pilot program in four Red Deer schools underlines the need for barrier-free access to pads and tampons. Over 62 per cent of respondents indicated they have left or missed school because period products weren’t available to them.
Mike Garrow, principal at École H.J. Cody High School in Sylvan Lake, is thankful to United Way in Central Alberta and the province for supporting such an important cause.
“The Period Promise will support all of our students and families by minimizing the barriers associated with the costs of menstrual hygiene products,” Garrow said.
According to Plan International Canada, 34 per cent of women and girls in Canada have had to regularly, or occasionally, sacrifice something else within their budget to afford menstrual products.