By Victor Montgomery
International Paper, a CSG Associate and the leading global supplier of renewable fiber-based products, has partnered with Always, the leader in global menstrual care, to drive systemic change and address period poverty. The lack of access to period protection, also known as period poverty, is an issue affecting more than 500 million women and girls globally. In the United States alone, nearly 1 in 5 children miss school because they do not have access to the period products they need.
In March 2022, also Women’s History Month, International Paper began hosting a series of period care packing events at its operations across the globe to raise awareness about period poverty. Then in mid-May, International Paper and Always took their collective efforts to Washington D.C. in support of Congresswoman Grace Meng’s Menstrual Equity for All Act and to advocate for systemic change ahead of Menstrual Hygiene Day.
While in D.C., Always and International Paper hosted another packing event alongside Feeding America that provided 500 period product kits to Mary’s Center – a local community health center. Every period care kit contains critical menstrual products donated by Always. By the end of 2022, International Paper and Always are projected to provide more than 25,000 Period Care kits to people across the world.
“International Paper and Always strongly believe in empowering girls and women. When girls have access to the products and resources they need each month, there’s nothing they can’t accomplish,” said Jason Handel, vice president of sales, Global Cellulose Fibers, International Paper. “This effort is aligned with our Vision 2030 goal of impacting 100 million lives. As we strive to be a force for good in our communities, we are proud to partner with Always, and we are incredibly grateful for our team members across the world who are helping resolve this important issue.”
“Since the launch of our #EndPeriodPoverty program in 2018, we have donated over 160 million period products to those in need around the world, including 60+ million products here in the US. We’re thrilled to continue our joint efforts with International Paper to help #EndPeriodPoverty and advocate to bring about societal change so that lack of period protection doesn’t stand in the way of education and confidence ever again,” said Melissa Suk, vice president of North America Feminine Care at Procter & Gamble. “Always has been championing girls’ confidence for more than 35 years and we are excited to collaborate and form alliances with individuals and organizations – like International Paper – who share the same mission as this will play a critical role in helping solve period poverty.