The P.E.I. Women’s Institute is launching the Taking Care of Women’s Business. Period. 28-day campaign.
Running from March 1 to March 28, the goal is to collect product or monetary donations to address the need for feminine hygiene products at P.E.I. food banks. The P.E.I. Women’s Institute wants to ensure there are sufficient feminine hygiene products to support the increasing number of clients this year. Drop-off locations include Murphy’s Pharmacies across P.E.I., Main Street Pharmasave in Souris and the WI Office at 40 Enman Cres., Charlottetown. Online donations can be made online at: URHM.org.
Approximately 400 women, not including youth, are in monthly need of items like tampons, pads or menstruation cups for women’s monthly cycles – this number represents The Upper Room Food Bank in Charlottetown only.
Mike MacDonald, the executive director of the food bank, says since the program started donations have steadily increased and so has the requirement.
“The need for products continues to climb, as often self-care goes down the list when women are worried about other basics needs such as food,” says MacDonald.
“Fortunately, through the beginning, originally under Tracey Comeau’s leadership, this project has fulfilled a need while raising much needed awareness as well. The campaign has a significant impact on the community.”
P.E.I. WI provincial board members, and new co-chairs of this project, Farida Chishti and Jacquie Laird, praise campaign founder Comeau for developing this meaningful collection and to build on her success, are sending out a challenge to members of the public, organizations, friends and families to increase the collection of items to give to those in need.
The campaign was launched when Comeau read a news article about a homeless woman who could not afford to purchase products for her menstrual cycle. Due to a conflict of interest with her position at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Foundation, Comeau met with the P.E.I. Women’s Institute to manage the now annual project.
Beginning in 2015, the campaign has raised over $15,000 worth of product or donation. Each year, the entire inventory collected is distributed to food banks across the Island within the weeks of the collection.