Extraordinary People

Here’s how your spare bras and period products can help people in need

Her Drive is an incredible mission to beat period poverty

A trip to Primark, or Marks and Sparks if you’re feeling fancy, to buy a new bra is so commonplace that we often forget about those who don’t have that privilege.

Yet thanks to a new power duo, they are creating a voice for the voiceless.

Budding philanthropists Jenica Baron and Alexa Mohsenzadeh have teamed up to provide bras and menstrual care to disadvantaged people who desperately need hygiene products.

The two students launched Her Drive during the first lockdown of the global pandemic to help girls and women access items in their effort to combat period poverty.

[Credit: Jenica Baron]

While they may be young, they have big dreams: Jenica, who is studying public health and psychology, is an aspiring physician determined to eliminate healthcare disparities between the rich and poor; while Alexa, who studies neuroscience and behavioural biology, is on a mission to help young people receive free menstrual care products in schools.

Together, the Chicago natives co-founded their non-profit organisation to support individuals who lack access to basic hygiene necessities so that everyone can live with dignity.

They kickstarted their quest by collecting products for people in their local community, amassing a whopping 800 bras, 4,635 menstrual care products, and 1,000 hygiene items which they donated across a women’s refuge, indigenous tribe, and emergency Covid fund.

[Credit: Alexa Mohsenzadeh]

Seeing the success of their work, Jenica and Alexa are continuing on their crusade and have since created the ‘Host Your Own Drive Program’ to empower other volunteers in far-flung corners of the world to help their communities and local shelters too.

Period poverty is a major injustice across the globe, in which people are unable to access sanitary products and have poor knowledge of menstruation due to financial constraints.

Even in places you would least expect, the issue prevails behind closed doors. In the UK, the sixth largest economy in the world, 1 in 10 girls cannot afford to buy menstrual products. This means they will use socks or tea towels during their periods instead of pads or tampons.

[Credit: Her Drive]

Period poverty not only plays into the taboo of menstruation as girls go through puberty, it is also disruptive to their education as they feel less able to pay attention in class while menstruating and will often skip school during this time meaning they fall behind on studies.

Jenica and Alexa have laid out a step-by-step guide to help fellow volunteers lead their own collections, explaining that other items such as shampoo, deodorant, condoms, baby wipes, hand sanitiser and toothpaste are just as valuable as menstrual products.

They really are the definition of girl power.

To get involved, click here: Her Drive.

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