“Y’all know literally like half this world goes through this? I keep some in my fanny pack when I go to the gym, and some in my backpack all the time.”
I bet when you read that, you thought it was a woman saying it. In fact, it was a man. Chance Ward of Occidental College has helped women who needed a tampon and supported them on Facebook by telling them to “never feel embarrassed for being human.” His actions are the sign of a new era, in which we are moving away from the stigma surrounding periods.
Ward’s kindness is not an isolated incident. Many advocates for women are taking the initiative to create a period friendly society. Back in 2015, New York City Council woman Julissa Ferreras-Copeland ran a pilot program that provided free feminine products in girl’s public school bathrooms. “For me, it’s not even a discussion of cost,” says Ferreras-Copeland. “This is needed to bring dignity and respect back to young girls.” It was so successful that Ferreras-Copeland has been able to expand the program to 12 intermediate and 13 high schools in Queens and the Bronx – the first district in the nation to have such a program. Over 11,000 girls have access to free tampons because of her efforts.
Schools are not the only places that have free tampons anymore. Restaurants are beginning to stock tampons in their bathrooms, but not just any tampon at any restaurant. Cora’s organic tampons are being stocked at Jessica Biel’s West Hollywood restaurant, Au Fudge.
Boys are carrying tampons for us, celebrity restaurants are stocking their bathrooms for us – times are changing. For example, a new hashtag has been created, #realmensupportwomen that asks other men to bring pads and tampons to school to help end stigma against menstruation. There is even a movement to make free sanitary products available in every bathroom. The Free Tampons Foundation doesn’t want women to have to worry about an unexpected physical need and cause an overwhelming emotional ordeal.
Though the stigmas of the past have not been completely erased yet, the efforts of people like Ward and Ferreras-Copeland are making it a little easier to be a woman. Cora is committed to help this cause, which is why Cora equips each woman with a Little Black Clutch and Stowaways to pass to every woman that finds herself suddenly needing one. Plus, when you sign up to be a member of Cora and give a Stowaway to a friend, you both get a free month of Cora.