New Period Poverty scheme launched in South Tyneside to help women in need

The group handing out supplies to Ocean Road CA.
The group handing out supplies to Ocean Road CA.

A group of teenagers have rolled out a new service across South Tyneside to help out women who are caught short.

The students, who are all taking part in the National Citizen Service (NCS) project, have launched the P Scheme.

Already a number of businesses across the borough have signed up to the initiative which offers free sanitary products to women who may be in need or who can’t afford to buy them.

Sophie Robson, a NCS participant, said: “We feel very passionate about period poverty and think it is unfair to potentially be faced in a situation where you may have to choose between paying for your bus fare home or buying a sanitary product.

“Our aim is to bring the community together in South Tyneside to tackle this issue.”

The group, who is carrying out their NCS through charity Headliners, which gives young people a voice through journalism, raised £300 to enable them to buy the sanitary products.

Donations were then made to companies including Ocean Road Community Centre, The Clifton Hotel and Coffee Shop, The Gym Group, Mayfair News and The Customs Space.

Sophie added: “We have more organisations who have expressed interest and are expecting the scheme in South Tyneside to grow fast. As a group we have already fundraised over £300 which will buy a few thousand sanitary products.

“Once products run low organisations have kindly pledged to keep topping up supplies.”

The public will be able to recognise P Scheme places by identifying the logo on the shop/business window.

Team leader Nooshin Shabani said: “Many girls and women find themselves in situations where they cannot afford supplies and often face having to choose between buying sanitary products, or their bus fare home.

“The group of young people I am working with identified this problem and felt very passionate about setting something up which could help people in this situation. I am very proud of how hard they have worked to kickstart this scheme.”