The Wurrumiyanga community (Nguiui) on Bathurst Island, Northern Territory, has become the latest community to receive a pallet of period products to help local women and girls manage their period with dignity.
This is the 100th pallet of period products delivered to Indigenous communities as part of Share the Dignity’s Indigenous Menstrual Health program and partnership with Libra.
Since the program started in June 2021, the charity estimates that 100,000 period products have been delivered, thanks to donations from Libra and support from freight partner Cope Sensitive Freight.
Share the Dignity Founder and Managing Director, Rochelle Courtenay, said these donations are essential due to the excessive cost of product in remote communities across Australia.
“In many remote communities, the cost of period products is much higher due to freight costs and lack of competition – it is not uncommon for packs of pads to retail for $15 or more,” Ms Courtenay said.
“Not only are women and girls in these areas unable to access to cheap period products, but many also go without clean water, working toilets and underwear – all of which are essential for good menstrual management.
“After hearing stories of Indigenous girls having to resort to stealing pads or skipping school, we made it a priority to support remote Indigenous communities with the tools and education they need to combat period poverty.
“We’re still early in this journey and there’s much more to be done, but we’re proud to be working alongside Libra to empower so many women and girls in these communities to take control of their period.”
At the time of the 100th pallet being dispatched, Share the Dignity had received 215 requests for period product deliveries from remote Indigenous communities since the program began last year and have been able to fulfil 81 requests across 64 communities.
Libra’s Head of Marketing, Laura Demarchi, said period care is essential to well-being and should be accessible to everyone, no matter where you live.
“At Libra, we believe that all women and girls have the right to achieve their full potential without worrying about their period, but sadly that isn’t always the case,” Ms Demarchi said.
“We’re delighted to work with Share the Dignity who continue year-on-year to break down stigmas related to periods, and whose work supporting women and girls, including in Indigenous communities, is strongly linked to our purpose and work at Libra.
“Our ongoing contribution of period care products will provide one less worry for many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander woman and girls who are living in remote communities and face greater difficulties than most in accessing essential health products and services.”
Those wanting to support Share the Dignity in reaching more Indigenous communities can donate to the charity’s bi-annual Dignity Drives in March and August each year, or purchase a virtual pack of pads online at sharethedignity.org.au