The importance of Menstrual Hygiene Day in 2023

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The importance of Menstrual Hygiene Day in 2023

As global providers of sanitary disposal units, you could say every day is menstrual hygiene day at SaniPod. But on May 28th each year, we make it official – joining in the worldwide celebration of Menstrual Hygiene Day.

Menstrual Hygiene Day first started back in 2014. Almost 10 years later, the initiative is still going strong. Breaking down social stigmas, and breaking new ground in the fight to end period poverty.

Here’s why Menstrual Hygiene Day is more important now than ever, and how we’ll be celebrating this year at SaniPod.

In 2023, the world still needs Menstrual Hygiene Day.

Periods are a normal, natural, and necessary part of life. But while the world’s attitude towards menstruation has come a long way, there’s still plenty of social stigma surrounding the subject. And the silence can be deafening. In India, it’s reported that 71% of girls don’t know periods exist until the first time they menstruate. This knowledge gap can take its toll on mental health – leading to feelings of shame, confusion, or fear.

Period poverty remains a significant global issue, too. In the US, 500 million citizens lack basic access to period products. While over in the UK, 24% have said they or someone in their family have struggled to afford sanitary items in the last year.

Social stigma and period poverty can impact everything from educational and professional opportunities, to emotional and physical wellbeing. The result? Today, menstruation is still holding millions back from reaching their full potential.

We still need Menstrual Hygiene Day here in New Zealand, too.

A 2019 study showed 8% of menstruating Kiwi students have had days off school because they lacked period products. 1 in 5 New Zealand women have missed school or work due to their period. And in 2020, The Period Place estimated that as many as 70,000 New Zealanders have no access to sanitary products or education at all. That’s right – none, period.

In June 2021, the government began rolling out free period products across New Zealand schools. In the programme’s first year, over 2000 schools opted in, and more than 600,000 menstrual product packs were given out.

This is a huge step forward, and it’s doing some major heavy lifting on period poverty in Kiwi schools. But there’s still a lot of legwork needed to make sure the other 1.5 million menstruating New Zealanders have access to much-needed sanitary products.

Boxes of period products donated by SaniPod to Shine NZ.

So, how is SaniPod recognising May 28th?

This Menstrual Hygiene Day, we’ll be donating 5,000 organic Oi period products to Shine NZ. But we’re also focused on ending period poverty all year round.

We’re working with Dignity NZ to help improve access to sanitary products throughout Aotearoa. With their ‘Buy One, Give One’ model, Dignity NZ provides free period products to 160 youth and community groups – reaching more than 36,000 people in the process. Through our Dignity NZ corporate subscription, we’re gifting free sanitary products to Kiwis every month.

We’ve also created the custom-designed SaniPod™ x Dignity unit. For every SaniPod™ x Dignity unit sold, we donate $1 to Dignity NZ. That means we’re helping businesses do their part to help end period poverty.

A white Pod Petite sanitary disposal unit with a Pod Wrap SaniPod x Dignity decal.

Let’s change the conversation around menstruation.

The team behind Menstrual Hygiene Day believe in a future where no one is held back by their period. Where periods can be talked about openly and freely, no matter who or where you are. Where every school, business, and facility provides the equipment needed to manage menstruation responsibly and respectfully. Here at SaniPod, that’s a future we can’t wait to see.

Looking for ways to celebrate Menstrual Hygiene Day? Check out the online events happening worldwide. Gift sanitary products to those who need them through Dignity NZ. Or simply open up the menstruation conversation in your circle.

Chat to us and find out how SaniPod can help your business!

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