Dozens more collection points in Norfolk for free sanitary products

Norfolk Library and Information Service staff with donated sanitary products. Picture: Norfolk Count

Norfolk Library and Information Service staff with donated sanitary products. Picture: Norfolk County Council - Credit: Archant

A service providing vulnerable women and girls with free sanitary products has been rolled out to 79 new locations in Norfolk.

The Tricky Period has provided products in all of the area's 47 libraries and Norfolk Library Information Service, six mobile libraries since 2017 and since April 2018 has supplied nearly 1,500 individual items and 967 packs.

Ahead of International Women's Day, Norfolk County Council announced it has funded one off orders for the additional 79 locations.

Among the new locations are collection points in museums, youth centres and other council properties.

A project worker from the Magdalene Group which runs services for vulnerable women in Norwich, described the 'massive difference' Tricky Period has made.

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She said: "The women feel that they now do not have to worry about their period each month and how they will afford tampons or pads… It has allowed them to continue with their day-to-day lives without worrying about how they will be able to find the funds each month."

On average around 130 packs of sanitary products are given out each month through the Tricky Period service.

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The service is set up so it can run off donations of unopened packs of sanitary towels, tampons, liners and wipes.

Any surplus stock can be donated to schools who request supplies.

According to figures from Plan International, one in ten girls aged 14-21 are unable to afford sanitary products and 49pc have missed an entire day of school because of their period.

Norfolk County Councillor Margaret Dewsbury said: "The success of Tricky Period and the amazing feedback we've received shows how valued it is, which is why we've now set up even more collection points to give a helping hand to women and girls in need.

"71% of girls in the UK admit they have felt embarrassed buying sanitary products, so we made sure our Tricky Period service is easy and discreet.

"But we also want it to be another step in reducing the stigma around sanitary products by showing to all visitors that this is an important and everyday reality that women face."

The products can be found in toilet facilities or "help yourself boxes" and customers can ask for bigger amounts, no questions asked, from library staff.

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