Power 4 Periods: Normalizing Periods

Nicole Alvarez, Writer

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  • Determined to helping homeless women in the community, Francisco Aceves, 12, joined P4P in hopes of making the menstruation cycle of women in need, more comfortable by supplying them with the necessities of their period. “Providing homeless women with hygiene products is very important to me,” Aceves said. “They can't afford these items and the least I can do is help them have a comfortable period by donating the supplies.”

  • Passionate about making a change in the community, Monserrat Medina,12, leads the DHS organization called Power 4 Periods in hopes of making a difference and normalizing menstruation. “One of the goals for P4P is to help normalize menstruation,” Medina said. “Menstruation is normal, it’s a natural thing for women that provides us with the ability to reproduce and it’s actually an amazing thing! Typically, it’s viewed as nasty or gross but its not. Without it, none of us would be here so I just hope more people join on the path to normalize menstruation.”

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250 million women around the globe do not have access to feminine products. This is why Downey High School’s Power 4 Periods club is having their annual drive on March 7. The drive will help raise feminine products to send to these women in need as well as spread awareness.

 

Power 4 Periods started through a classroom assignment in Ms. Kelsey Simpson’s class. The assignment was to figure out how homeless women deal with their menstruation despite their lack of resources. Shocked at the unsanitary and potentially dangerous items homeless women were using, such as socks, they decided to have their first their first drive on April 5, 2017. The drive’s aim was to prevent life threatening infections such as toxic shock syndrome. Since then, they have done successful drives where they have raised up to 10,000 feminine products in subsequent years.

 

Current member of the club, Monse Medina, 12, stresses the importance of protecting these women with feminine products.

 

“It’s very important to help provide these women with these necessities,” Medina stated. “And, take in mind, that they go through menstruation every month just like every other woman.”

 

Through organizations such as Conscious Period, Cora, Days 4 Girls, and Downey’s Power 4 Periods club, menstruation cycles are no longer being portrayed as a gross and shameful incident.

 

Ms. Simpson, Power 4 Periods advisor, expresses how ridiculous shaming women for having a period is.

 

“Periods are not gross! Having a period is a part of life,”, Simpson stated. “Everyone on this planet exists because their mothers were able to have a period.”

 

However, people still stigmatize periods as something women should stay quiet about and often times feel ashamed about.  While this does not mean that women should be obligated to show their used products to the world, the movement’s goal is to normalize menstruation so that women do not feel ashamed about their natural bodily processes. Having a period is not a choice that a woman makes. Instead, it is a natural monthly occurrence which should be celebrated.