Buchanan donation drive bringing awareness to period poverty
BUCHANAN, Mich.—A Buchanan native has set up donation bins around her hometown to collect female hygiene products for women experiencing period poverty.
Buchanan native Megan Goodrich launched her project, in partnership with the Buchanan Gateway Community Foundation, “One Month at a Time,” because she does not want women to have to make a choice between buying food and buying necessities like pads and tampons. She says women can find themselves experiencing period poverty for a variety of different reasons.
“It’s [period poverty] basically when you don’t have the financial funds to cover your menstrual products either due to a job issue, or because you’re homeless, you may be an inmate somewhere; there are a lot of reasons for people experiencing period poverty,” Goodrich said.
Lead organizer Goodrich and a group of volunteers set up donation boxes in early May around Buchanan at locations including:
- Buchanan Art Center
- Gary Z’s
- Buchanan High School
- Buchanan Senior Center
- Buchanan Public Library
- Pit Stop
All locations will accept donations for products such as pads, tampons, new, packaged underwear, hand sanitizer, heating pads, ibuprofen and other nonperishable items related to women’s health and hygiene until June 14.
“If you don’t have proper access, then you’re really hindering your health,” Goodrich said. “Even in our small towns, you may not see it, but that’s because people don’t want to talk about it. Nobody wants to talk about not being able to afford products to keep their body clean.”
Following the culmination of the donation drive, on June 22 from noon to 4 p.m., Goodrich and her team will host an event at the Buchanan Art Center that focuses on education around women’s health.
Dr. Audrey Carrier, a physician in Buchanan, will speak at the event about multiple topics related to women’s health.
“I wanted to find a doctor to give us a service of providing body health education so that people can know what’s normal for their body and what’s not what are symptoms of cancer, what are symptoms of endometriosis, when do I need to go to a doctor,” Goodrich said.
Women in need of hygiene products may attend the event to receive them. All leftover products after the event will be donated to Redbud Area Ministries.
The event on June 22 is open to people of all genders and ages.
Goodrich hopes that the donation drive and the event will help fight the stigma that she says is often placed on talking about women’s health topics.
“That young girl who maybe just started her period in class may be afraid to tell her teacher. Well by having a donation box at the high school or the art center or the library or any of our donation sights, I hope that families and people will see them and notice, okay, well, that is a need and maybe that’s not as stigmatized an issue as we think, it’s a normal body occurrence,” Goodrich said.
Find out more about how you can participate in Goodrich’s project by visiting the Facebook event.