A VOLUNTEER-run service in Monmouthshire is working to make period poverty a thing of the past by providing free sustainable period products to those in need.

Earlier this year, Stacey Carter attended a Zoom session with charity Ditch the Rag, who offer free education and reusable period products.

"There was a sudden light-bulb moment," she said.

"Why aren’t we promoting this throughout Monmouthshire?"

"If you give someone a pack of disposable pads or tampons, they are probably going to have to ask time and time again, but give them a cup or washable, reusable pads or pants, they will not have to ask for another ten years."


This, she explained, could save people around £5,000 during their lifetime as well as being better for the environment.

So, Sustainable You, Sustainable Me was born. The initial pilot ran in February and has so far benefited 74 people in need.

The project, in partnership with Monmouthshire Housing Association's community group Neighbours Together and Ditch the Rag, was a co-produced under the remit of the Lottery-funded Working Families team which supports families who are in work but struggle things like school meals, haircuts, day trips, school uniforms and period products.

The group was set up after Ms Carter had to rely on a similar service herself, earlier in her life.

Sustainable You, Sustainable me has now received it is first grant of £5,729 from Monmouthshire County Council through the Welsh Government's period dignity grant for communities.

"This has enabled us to offer access to free education sessions and free sustainable period packs for participants of the sessions," said Ms Carter.

"The funding means up to 300 menstruators will benefit from the scheme, with the view of securing more funding in the near future."

Sustainable You, Sustainable sessions are open to everyone in the Monmouthshire area, including men, with the first one taking place on the April 5.

"Sustainable You, Sustainable Me is about empowerment, support, education, and breaking down the barriers, stigma and taboo of periods," said Ms Carter.

"We hope you will join, share and more importantly; talk about, our journey to a more sustainable Monmouthshire."