Confident, Healthy Women is an organization determined to supply the women of New York City in need with feminine hygiene products. We believe it is a right for every woman to have the proper hygiene products because it is a necessity not a privilege. We have hosted drives and partnered with companies to create goodie bags filled with menstrual products, toothpaste, deodorant, etc. for women to feel safe and lead with confidence.Updates from Confident, Healthy Women
Our names are Olivia Stone and Grace Dana. We are the creators and founders of Confident, Healthy Women, an organization made to supply the women of New York City who don’t have access to feminine hygiene products they need. We supply these products in decorated goodie bags with personal and empowering messages to the women receiving them.
Coming from an all-girls school, women empowerment has been a central value and ideal that we live by. With the support of our teachers and peers, we were given the opportunity to form an organization where women can help other women become the best versions of themselves. Everyday, we come to school with the proper feminine hygiene products when needed, while some women struggle to even obtain access to these products in times of desperate need. These products not only provide proper safety measures, but confidence and dignity. Passionate and determined, we researched and discovered statistics, articles and graphs that revealed the inequality and unequal distribution of feminine hygiene products to women in certain financial situations. From there, we have continued on with our organization and donated over 200 bags to women in need of these products. Overall Confident, Healthy Women is one of many organizations to help break down and resolve the struggles multiple women deal with on a daily basis.
After winning the Call for Kindness 2020, we were especially excited to become part of the Riley’s Way family. We are excited to have the support of this community to further our mission. The grant will not only help our organization collect more products to distribute but it will give us the ability to learn more about gender inequality and spread this important information to girls in our school and community. One example of an educator is Nadya Okamoto, who is one of many powerful activists who fights to end period poverty and gender inequality.
Being in the situation we are in currently, we are going through with a lot of digital and technical plans. We have begun working on our logo and our social media. The reason we are creating a social media platform is to spread awareness of our organization so people across NYC can become involved and help us reach more women in need. We also have begun working with our school to get more teen leaders involved in our organization. Lastly, we have been setting major deadlines and plans for ourselves for the new school year so when we return, we can hit the floor running. We are looking forward to where our organization goes from here and are thankful for the support of the Riley’s Way family!
Hello Riley’s Way! This year was Confident, Healthy Women’s second year of hosting a feminine hygiene drive for the guests of the New York Common Pantry. In addition to creating an Amazon Smile drive, we conducted presentations throughout our school to educate our community on period poverty. While providing products to women is the most important way to tackle period poverty, advocacy and education are just as crucial.
An important part of our presentations was giving a poll to high school students that assess their comfortability talking about periods. These polls allowed us to show in real numbers how period stigma is so prevalent in our society today. For one of the questions, we asked how discussing their period makes them feel. We provided five answers, along with a customizable response. There was a fifty-fifty split between the responses of “embarrassed” and “neutral.” 50% of each individual grade felt “awkward” or “embarrassed” while talking about their periods. However, 0% of the 11th grade felt “empowered” or “confident” talking about their period. The stigma around periods, perpetuated by male dominance, film, media, and other factors, make girls feel embarrassed talking about a topic that is related to their body. We began to discuss why the majority felt this way.
We came to the conclusion that discussing the impacts of having one’s period and feeling confident in a time of vulnerability is neglected in our society. Period poverty affects millions of women globally. Many women in the United States typically tend to struggle to achieve sufficient menstrual hygiene either due to lack of income, access or a combination of both. It can often come down to a choice between food or hygiene products. In a 2014 report, 42 million impoverished women were surveyed. Two-thirds of them did not have the resources to buy hygiene products at some point in the last year and one-fifth struggle to afford products on a monthly basis. The Pink Tax or Tampon Tax imposes gender-based pricing that undermines the value of feminine hygiene. Out of 50 US states, only 13 of them currently exempt these taxes. And in no place does SNAP benefits cover menstrual products for women living below the poverty line.
The COVID pandemic has allowed us to strengthen our social media presence through Quotes of Week, graphics, and photographs. The Riley’s Way grant and support has allowed our organization to flourish, creating a strong foundation and networking system within CHW. Over this past year, we donated more than 1,500 products and plan to double this amount in the coming months.