Kingston local Ruby Eddleston is working on her Queen's Guide award.
The Queen's Guide award assesses character, creative thinking, community, commitment, collaboration and communication and is the peak achievement in guiding.
As part of the community section, she has been working on advocating issues relevant to Girl Guides and women in the local community.
Ruby provided the following article for publication.
It's in the bag
Period poverty and stigma is an issue that is still present in society, even in the 21st century.
One in five Australian women experience period poverty, having to choose between buying food and period products, making do with paper towels in place of sanitary pads, or using a less suitable, lower quality brand of pads or tampons.
In many countries, sanitary items are taxed as 'luxuries,' and women who do not have access or the means necessary to procure these items must resort to unhygienic methods.
Poverty is not the only issue women face during their periods.
Despite changing times and a society that allows us to be more open on issues such as mental health and identity, the stigma around periods lingers.
Imagine how this impacts period poverty.
A woman on her period but without access to suitable products may feel as though she can't ask for help and may be too embarrassed to voice her struggles surrounding such a taboo topic.
Of course, there are organisations that can help.
Share the Dignity, Hey Girls Australia and Plan International Australia aim to lower period stigma and poverty.
As we head into the Christmas season, Share the Dignity's It's in the Bag appeal allows us all a simple, convenient method of giving much-needed sanitary products to Australian women struggling to afford necessities.
Simply fill a bag with items such as pads, tampons, soaps, deodorants, hairbrushes, toothpaste and toothbrushes, shampoo and conditioner, and take it to Bunnings Warehouse.
Donations opened on November 10.
There are ways to reduce period stigma and poverty in Australia.
Be a part of it.