Women’s Centre of Calgary is in need of toiletries to distribute to women and children in the community.
The centre posted an urgent call for body wash, deodorant, lotion, shampoo, sanitary pads, and toilet paper on August 3.
According to the Women’s Centre of Calgary’s communication coordinator, Esther Nwafor, there is currently a high demand in the community for the products.
“Women probably use them every day, multiple times a day, and we’ve been having a lot of Ukrainian refugees come to the center for help as well,” said Nwafor.
“These are most likely people who have not gotten a job yet, are new to the community, and have nobody to turn to—and we’re here to offer them the support they need,” she said.
Calgarians are being asked to call the centre at 403-264-1155 if they are in a position to donate. Details for how to donate items, or financially, are also available on their website.
Items are being distributed to women, girls in need
According to Nwafor the items donated to the centre are also distributed to teens, as some girls start their period at the age of 11-years-old.
The centre usually gets their donations from their partners, members of the community and women who have accessed the centre in the past and would like to give back to the community said Nwafor.
“The donations that are being sent are making such a big difference in these people’s lives,” she said.
“I just want to be able to communicate that to everyone because there’s a hesitation usually when it comes to donating but it’s making such a significant difference in so many people’s lives.”
Nwafor said that, the issue of period poverty is systematic as feminine hygiene products are often priced as a luxury items.
“Feminine hygiene and female care—having a paying tax on them and they’re priced like their luxury products even though it’s something that everyone needs—you don’t really have a choice to not menstruate,” she said.
Nwafor said that greater long term solutions to systemic need, needs to come from government.
The Women’s Centre of Calgary helps people from disadvantaged communities. They serve refugees, women escaping domestic violence situations, single moms, minorities, as well as indigenous and immigrant women.
“They’re very happy coming in, and when we’re able to help them, they leave with this relief on their faces,” said Nwafor.