Image of the sanitary product box

Published: Wednesday, 1st February 2023

The Royal Borough of Greenwich has joined forces with Hey Girls to tackle period poverty in the borough.

Hey Girls are an award-winning social enterprise creating plant-powered period products that fund the fight to end period poverty in the UK. 

Period poverty is a global issue affecting those who don’t have access to safe, hygienic menstrual products. Not having access to sanitary products is not only a health issue but can affect the wellbeing, education and entire lives of those who menstruate. 

For a three-month trial, free sanitary products will be available at Thamesmere and Plumstead leisure centres to anyone who needs them for themselves or for their family. If the scheme is successful, it could be expanded to more leisure centres across the borough. 

Cllr Adel Khaireh, Cabinet Member for Equality, Culture and Communities said “Over 25% people in the UK choose to not partake in physical activity due to not having access to tampons or sanitary towels.

Being active positively impacts our physical and mental health and to know such a huge chunk of people are sitting out of sports due to not having the right access to period products is something we must work towards to change.  “ 

The cost of living crisis is forcing families to make decisions on where to cut costs. More and more people are struggling to afford the essentials, such as hygiene products.  People are opting to leave their tampon in longer than the recommended time to save wastage. This can lead to health issues including Toxic Shock Syndrome, a life threatening bacterial condition caused by leaving a tampon in over the recommended time. 

Cllr Denise Scott-Mcdonald, Cabinet Member for Health and Adults’ Social Care said: “ Our health is vital to living the life we all deserve.

Having access to hygiene products is a basic human right and no one should be forced to put their own or the life of a loved one at risk in order to save on costs.

Making period products more accessible means giving those menstruating back the power over their health and everyday life. We must break the barriers holding people back from living their healthiest life, partnering with Hey Girls is a great place to start.”