Spotlight: The Period Poverty Project
Ellie and Sara, both juniors at Towson High School, have been friends and neighbors since first grade. Together, they took over The Period Poverty Project in August 2020. The organization is dedicated to educating people on period poverty and providing students in Baltimore County Public Schools with free menstrual products.
Every week, Ellie and Sara create “period packs” for students in Baltimore County Public Schools. The organization distributes between 300 and 600 period packs a week. A typical period pack has enough menstrual supplies to last one menstrual cycle, including 5 maxi pads, 5 thin pads, 5 liners, and 10 tampons.
The Period Poverty Project serves all families in Baltimore County Public Schools. Through the Student Support Network, distribution drives are held once a week at the following locations:
The Period Poverty Project asks 6-7 volunteers each week to assemble period packs. Over the past 6 months, the organization has worked with at least 50 different volunteers. Ellie and Sara have also organized “packing parties” where volunteers can help assemble period packs. It’s the perfect social-distance activity, especially when the weather is warm! The organization has an Amazon Wishlist where people can help buy supplies for period packs.
Ellie and Sara have been overwhelmed by the support of their local community! The two mentioned that taking over for the Period Poverty Project in August helped them realize how often menstrual equity work can be pushed under the rug. In addition to their work on the local level, Ellie and Sara are supporting HB0205 – Public Schools – Provision of Menstrual Hygiene Products – Requirement in the 2021 Maryland General Assembly. This legislation was priority bill for MD NARAL as well. You can read more about HB0205 on our website. The new law will be enacted in fall 2022.
After graduation, Ellie is interested in social justice activism and Sara is interested in photojournalism.