Accessibility to period products and other essential items such as tampons, pads, and underwear, are necessities that many women in the U.S struggle to obtain due to the affordability of such items as they are seen as a “luxury” for women. An organization by the name of “Her Drive” recognized these accessibility issues for women in need and made a change for the better by starting their own donation drive from Chicago Illinois, which has now expanded to various states across the U.S including Iowa.
“Her drive is a nonprofit organization that was founded in June of 2020. They provide bras, menstrual care, and general hygiene products to people in need in an effort to combat periods and have hygiene poverty,” Kaitlyn Johnson ‘22, an organizer from Liberty High School, said. “As of now, they have donated over 3,000 new/gently used bras, 39,000 menstrual care products, and 6,000 general hygiene items to places all across the United States with over 100 drives. There are also an additional 300+ drives scheduled for spring 2021.”
City High School is participating in this drive from January 16 through February 14 by main organizers Kaitlyn Johnson and Bea Kaskie from Liberty High School. Other local donation drives are located at Smash Juice Bar, North Liberty Rec, North Liberty Hyvee, and 365 Nutrition.
“Her Drive drive is a national nonprofit, but it provides the resources for individuals across the nation to create local drives in order to promote the mission at both a small and large scale,” Bea Kaskie ‘22, an organizer from Liberty High School, said. “We’re able to not only grow as leaders and organizers but help support our community with donations and promote open communication on period poverty. We hope that this drive supports menstruating persons and all those that receive any donations. It’s important to recognize the stigmatized conversation around menstruating in order to make a lasting change of continued support for intersectional community growth.”
Students are able to bring new/gently used bras, menstrual care items, and general hygiene products to the drive’s collection box located in the main office of the school building. Students are also able to sign up for contactless free pickup to take part in the donation drive as well.
“The goal this organization hopes to achieve is that they hope to bring the community together by encouraging them to help their neighbors in need/that aren’t as privileged as themselves,” Natalie Nunez ‘22 said. “They also hope to help people in need as much as they possibly can, as they [have the privilege to do so].”
As for the future of this organization, organizers for this drive hope to do a separate service project focusing on intersectional environmentalism and feminism.
“This organization has helped women in Iowa by providing them the common products a person should have, free at no cost, as they are doing this to simply help out those in need,” Nunez said. “They see [those] hygiene products are not as available to everyone and do whatever they can in order to give to those who need it [and] they are also focused on supporting BIPOC communities!”
More information can be found at www.herdrive.org and any questions can be sent to [email protected]
To sign up for a contactless free pickup use this link: https://tinyurl.com/y4jt44rd and someone will come and pick up donations from your house.