Hatfield schoolgirls’ mission to end period poverty in borough

PUBLISHED: 09:23 09 October 2018 | UPDATED: 09:37 09 October 2018

Bishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOO

Bishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2018 Danny Loo Photography - all rights reserved

Two Hatfield schoolgirls have ended period poverty in their school and are now on a mission to end it in the borough.

Bishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOOBishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOO

Katie McAree, 15, and Elena Savvas, 15, were inspired to launch their campaign to end period poverty after attending a women’s rights march in London.

They first went to their form tutor at Bishop’s Hatfield Girls’ School who told them to pitch their ideas to a senior member of staff.

The youngsters came up with the idea of having a set of draws placed somewhere in the school that were accessible to every single pupil, filled with tampons and pads.

Katie told the Welwyn Hatfield Times: “Our main concern was that we wanted it to be a discreet process and for girls to feel comfortable going to get the products.”

Bishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOOBishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOO

Before the girls introduced the drawers, pupils could go and ask a teacher for sanitary products and they would be given to them free of charge.

Katie added: “Whilst that was great, the problem with that is that some girls are very embarrassed by it and would rather not ask.”

The drawers mean that girls can help themselves to as many sanitary products as they will need to get them through their period - rather than just being handed one pad.

The pair, who want to end the tampon tax, also held assemblies before bringing in the drawers so they could educate their peers on the issues.

Bishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOOBishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOO

Elena, from Welham Green, said: “It’s made us feel so proud and feel like we are really part of the school’s community.

“We are horrified by our research and discovering how much of a problem this is so we’re really glad that no girls in our school will struggle.”

Assistant headteacher Melissa Jackson said: “I am incredibly proud of the initiative our girls have shown in getting this project off the ground.

“They are fantastic role-models to the rest of the school.

Bishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOOBishop's Hatfield Girls' School year 11 pupils (L-R) Elena Savvas and Katie McAree have set up a tower to help end end period poverty in the school. Picture: DANNY LOO

“It makes us so proud that our girls not only care about issues in society, but also want to be active citizens and make a change.”

The school is welcoming donations of sanitary products or money to buy them - currently the only way to donate is to go into the school’s office.

To follow the girls’ mission to end period poverty in Hertfordshire follow them on Twitter @HelpingPeriodsHerts and their Facebook page Helping Periods Herts.

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