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Nor'West News: October 22, 2020

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NOR’WEST NEWS Latest Canterbury news at starnews.co.nz<br />

Thursday <strong>October</strong> <strong>22</strong> <strong>2020</strong> 13<br />

Charities to benefit from fundraising students<br />

MORE THAN 1000 packs of<br />

sanitary products have been<br />

donated to two charities in<br />

Linwood who support victims of<br />

violence and sexual harm.<br />

Canterbury University<br />

students are fighting the<br />

country’s period poverty crisis<br />

by donating sanitary products<br />

to Te Puna Oranga and Aviva<br />

Families, raising $1000 in the<br />

process.<br />

In the first week of fundraising,<br />

the students have collected<br />

more than 1000 packs of sanitary<br />

products, which have been<br />

donated to the Linwood-based<br />

charities.<br />

Students Romy Gellen, Serena<br />

Cooper, Caitlin Baker, Olivia<br />

Dobbs and Charlotte Hawkins<br />

have been inspired by their<br />

media and social change course<br />

project.<br />

As part of the project, the<br />

students have analysed a New<br />

Zealand-made short film from<br />

Stuff’s Someday Stories series<br />

named Super Special.<br />

“When we saw the film about<br />

period poverty right here in<br />

Aotearoa, we were upset to<br />

find it was a reality for so many<br />

young people,” said Gellen.<br />

“The group project made us<br />

really passionate and drove us to<br />

actually do something to combat<br />

the issue.”<br />

Baker said they have chosen Te<br />

Puna Oranga and Aviva Families<br />

because they want to support<br />

local organisations.<br />

A 2019 study showed that<br />

“12.5 per cent of students who<br />

had had their first period<br />

missed out on menstrual items<br />

due to cost, and that 7.5 per<br />

cent had missed school because<br />

they couldn’t access menstrual<br />

products.”<br />

In some lower socio-economic<br />

areas, period poverty was as high<br />

as 20 per cent, she said.<br />

Course lecturer Dr Maja<br />

STIGMA:<br />

(From left) –<br />

Canterbury<br />

University<br />

students<br />

Romy Gellen,<br />

Olivia Dobbs,<br />

Charlotte<br />

Hawkins,<br />

Caitlin Baker<br />

and Serena<br />

Cooper have<br />

launched a<br />

fundraising<br />

initiative to<br />

combat period<br />

poverty in New<br />

Zealand.<br />

Zonjić said period poverty is<br />

a fact of life for many people<br />

in Aotearoa New Zealand and<br />

is compounded by the social<br />

stigma surrounding menstruation.<br />

“To see my students get<br />

inspired by their final group project<br />

to tackle this critical issue<br />

and start such an important initiative<br />

is incredibly humbling,”<br />

she said.<br />

“I am very proud of them and<br />

I hope their actions encourage<br />

others to positively contribute to<br />

their communities.”<br />

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