Fantastic news for the Red Box Project as a school in Portsmouth reveals that since the scheme was introduced, attendance levels have grown by nearly a third.
The very first Red Box Project was originally launched in Portsmouth and the non-political, community-led project now has over 400 volunteers across the country, with more than 1,500 Red Boxes in schools helping to bring an end to Period Poverty.
Ending period poverty
The Project supplies schools with boxes containing free menstrual items that have been donated by members of the public for girls who, without the help, would be absent from school.
The BBC are reporting that Castle View Academy in Portsmouth has said since the scheme was introduced it had helped increase attendance levels by nearly a third.
Isle of Wight Red Box Project
The Isle of Wight branch of the RBP has gained lots of media attention in the last week thanks to the motion proposed by Independent Green councillor, Michael Lilley. He gave a deeply personal and heartfelt speech at last week’s full council meeting, as he called on the Isle of Wight council to support the scheme.
His motion read:
Resolved that Isle of Wight Council supports the IW Red Box Project and campaign in their endeavour to raise awareness and tackle period poverty which results in an estimate of one in ten girls in IW schools not able to afford sanitary products through provision of free products in all schools across the Island.
Councillors trying “to make political gains”
Conservative councillor, Chris Whitehouse pushed for an amendment to Cllr Lilley’s motion to remove the name of the Red Box Project, which was approved by all the Conservative councillors.
Following the meeting, many expressed their disappointment and anger, including the Cabinet member, Cllr Paul Brading, who said, “I do not like it when councillors try to make political gains out of our children”.
Show your support
You can help bring period poverty to an end on the Isle of Wight by making a donation of sanitary products in the collection boxes around the Isle of Wight.
- Bebeccino Kids café, Unitarian Church. 15 High Street. Newport PO30 1SS. Mon, Wed, Thurs.
- Community Action, Isle of Wight. Riverside, The Quay, Newport. PO30 2QR. (Amy Milford-Wood has the box)
- Vectis Radio behind Community Action also at Riverside, The Quay, Newport. PO30 2QR
- Sainsburys, Foxes Road, Newport. PO30 5ZB.
- Newport Congregational Church, 98, Pyle Street, Newport. PO30 1UH.
- Eye Department (staff room), St. Mary’s Hospital, Parkhurst Road, Newport PO30 5TG.
- Lord Louis Library Orchard Street, Newport. PO30 1LL
- Aspire Café. Trinity Buildings, Dover Street, Ryde. PO33 2BN.
- Sugar and Spice Lingerie. 60 Union Street, Ryde. PO33 2LG.
- Tesco Extra Brading Road, Ryde. PO33.
- Ryde Health and Wellbeing Centre 57, Pellhurst Road, PO33 3DT.
- East Cowes Vics AFC. Beatrice Avenue, East Cowes, Isle of Wight, PO32 6PA. Wed and Fri evenings. Speak to Victoria.
- West Wight Nursery, West Wight Nursery, Summers Lane, Totland, PO39 0HQ. Phone: 01983 640 190.
- Isle of Wight Pearl, Military Road, Brighstone, Isle of Wight PO30 4DD
- Sainsburys, 129 – 130, High Street, Cowes. PO31 7AY.
- MS Charity Shop, 47, Regent Street, Shanklin. PO37 7AF.
For full details of where you can drop of donations of sanitary products, see the Friends of Red Box Project Facebook Group.
Image: © Carrie Fineran