Access to period supplies is an issue that affects millions of menstruating bodies globally every day. When looking locally, a recent study by The Flow Initiative shares that approximately 30% of students in Hudson County face hardship when it comes to access to items such as pads, tampons, sanitary wipes, liners, and more each month. The American Medical Women’s Association defines this hardship under the term ‘period poverty.’ In understanding the need for awareness and resources in this space, we have partnered with The Flow Initiative to create Project Local Access, a drive for period supplies to distribute to those in need and the community at large. Read on to learn more about how to get involved.
After a successful drive in 2020 that collected over 30,000 supplies, Hoboken Girl and The Flow Initiative have set a lofty goal:
To donate period supplies to at least one school or community center in all 11 towns that make up Hudson County this year. That means reaching last year’s number of 30,000 supplies or more.
To make this happen, women-owned local businesses throughout Hudson County are coming together to be drop-off spots for period supplies.
And here’s where we need your help — because it takes a village. Read on for how you can give back to the local community, help those in need, and raise awareness for period poverty in Hudson County.
Project Local Access
Donating period supplies can help change the month and even the school year of menstruating students in Hudson County.
Dates of Collection for Supplies
Starting October 25th through November 15th, the local businesses below will accept needed items during business hours. Those interested can bring new boxes of pads, tampons, panty liners, individually wrapped feminine wipes, and menstruation relief pads to any location. The Flow Initiative will collect and disperse where needed. More on the drop-off locations and hours as you read on.
Items Needed (must be new boxes/packages)
Pads (all sizes)
Tampons (all sizes)
Individually Wrapped Sanitary Products
Personal Heating/Menstruation Pain Relief Pads or Patches
Little City Books | 100 Bloomfield Street, Hoboken
Mint Market | 303 1st Street, Hoboken
Mint Market | 339 Grove Street, Jersey City
NJ Acupuncture Center | 550 Newark Avenue #201, Jersey City
Daily 24 hours
JaneDo | 720 Monroe Street, Hoboken
Saturdays 9AM-11AM or during class hours
The MAX Challenge | 537 Washington Street, Hoboken
Monday-Friday 5AM-12PM; 4-8PM
Word Bookstore | 123 Newark Avenue, Jersey City
There’s also an opportunity to shop for supplies via this Amazon Wish List and have it delivered directly to the event team.
The Need in the Community
Too often period poverty is discussed as a global issue with the idea that menstruating bodies in underdeveloped countries face a lack of access to supplies more often than in the U.S. While the global numbers are high, 20% of menstruating students in this country are forced to miss school or experience an accident during the day.
Hudson County is home to some of the highest numbers of students facing period poverty in the country. This not only affects overall menstrual hygiene, but can lead to poor education outcomes, missed work, and mental health issues.
Founder of The Flow Initiative, Eiko La Boria, shared that students who have benefitted from previous drives have said that school is much easier, and they feel more confident when access to supplies is not a worry. In 2020, our partnership was able to donate over 5,000-period supplies to menstruating persons throughout the county. We hope to exceed that number this year.
On The Flow Initiative
The stats surrounding period poverty and access to supplies were striking to Jersey City resident Eiko La Boria prompting her into action and to found The Flow Initiative.
Just in Jersey City, 90% of menstruating bodies have a need for supplies while in school, 76% have had an accident, and 20% have missed school completely. Upon learning this, Eiko made it her mission to get these products in the hands of those in need while also erasing the stigma and shame often associated with periods.
Over the years, she has advocated for menstrual equity in the city and county at large while creating an access plan to start getting period product dispensaries and opening emergency period product distribution centers throughout the city. Her work is necessary for the community, and she hopes to take this mission nationwide.
Giving Back + Raising Awareness
Please stop by any of the above locations from October 25th to November 15th with period supplies to help us hit our goal.
To help in the ongoing efforts to raise awareness of the realities of period poverty and the need for supplies, tag @thehobokengirl on social media and give a tag to all businesses helping out with this drive. Together, we can end the stigma of periods and work towards equity.