Feminist Club reaches out with feminine product drive


Jordan Hanlon

Students donate feminine hygiene products to support the Samaritian and Freedom House.

Jordan Hanlon, Editor-in-Chief of The Highlander

Carlmont’s Feminist Club is running a feminine hygiene product drive from March 14 to March 28 for donation to needful communities of women as well as to fight the social stigma of discussing menstruation.

The idea behind the drive was created by junior Sydney Pon, the co-president of the feminist club. Her goal is to have the school collect and donate feminine hygiene products to aid people in the Samaritan House, a supportive community providing housing and resources for people living with HIV, AIDS, and other similar needs.

The other recipient of the drive is Freedom House, a community whose aim is to double the rate of students who graduate from college and support students in working hard toward their high school and college educational goals.

The issue of lack of access to menstrual products first came apparent to me last year in a topic that has been discussed among many feminists: the tampon tax. There was talk in many states to remove this tax from all menstrual products due to the gender bias. I realized how hard it must be for homeless women to obtain these products,” said Pon.

According to junior Ashley Wen, Pon’s co-president, the club’s goal for the drive is beyond lending a helping hand to the centers. They also hope to reduce a lot of negative stigma that comes with the topic of menstrual cycles and attempt to make students more comfortable with talking about their periods. This also could lead to students, both male and female, to a better understanding of why it’s important to have proper female hygienic maintenance.

“Upon researching and learning about the importance of menstrual products, I soon realized the absence of this topic from Feminist Club as well as many feminist publications and our own school,” said Pon.

However, the feminine product drive has created a bit of controversy. Some students feel uncomfortable with the fact that they have to deliver the products to their teachers in front of their fellow classmates.

“I think the drive is a little weird because those [feminine products] are a very personal thing to just be giving out at school because it’s a girl’s period. It makes me somewhat uncomfortable,” said freshman Bailey Young.

A majority of the students feel that the feminine product drive is unusual because they are uneducated on the topic and uncomfortable with something that they don’t understand. A significant purpose of this drive was to educate those who are unaware of the real facts and normalcy of a period.

Other students see this drive as a positive thing and a way to make the topic of periods more accepted.

“The feminine product drive is a great thing. I believe that feminine products should not be priced as a luxury item, nor should they be a subject of embarrassment because it’s a natural process of every female. It’s great that the school is giving an opportunity to those who are less fortunate because it is essential to the health and hygiene of a women,” said sophomore Simone Almendarez.