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Local Group Works To End Period Poverty In Hampton Roads

Over 60 percent of females have worn a tampon or a pad for more than the recommended time during menstruation, and one in four teenagers have missed class because they did not have access to the necessary resources, according to the nonprofit, Period.

Hampton Roads youth are not exempt from this problem. Upon learning this Norfolk yoga teacher and activist, Julie Paddock decided to take action.

“I just started thinking about what I would do if I didn’t have a tampon or a pad when I needed one, it was easy to connect to the cause," said Paddock.

To end period poverty and stigma in Hampton Roads Paddock founded Period NFKVB. Period NFKVB is a, “community chapter working to fill the gap in disparity and safety, advocating for wider access to these essential and expensive products.”

In 2019 they held a National Period Day Rally in Norfolk to push for menstrual product accessibility.

The Hampton Roads chapter is part of a larger nonprofit, called Period. Period works to eradicate period poverty and stigma through service, education and advocacy.

They’ve been busy since then doing related work by collecting menstrual supply items and donating them to schools and nonprofits in the area. They also participate in advocacy work in Richmond. They went this winter to discuss and educate legislators on the topic of period poverty.

This past January the Virginia Senate passed a bill for schools to provide menstrual products. This bill requires schools to provide these products for grades 5-12.

Paddock also educates the community on how these products aren’t always accessible to everyone and this is often because of income and racial lines.

Over the past year the chapter has packed and distributed over 500 packs of period products.

Paddock and her team are continuing to collect products. “We are definitely the little chapter that could, we can impact change,” said Paddock.

If you’d like to get involved click here.

You can follow them on social here: Facebook.

Instagram: @periodnfk.vb

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