Students Helping Aboriginal Women in Remote Communities
By most socio-economic indicators, Aboriginal (and Torres Strait Islander) communities are the most disadvantaged groups in Australia. Women in many of these remote communities also face special challenges—one major one is the inability to source affordable feminine hygiene products. Here’s how our groups are supporting them.
What is a “Moon Sick” Bag?
Together with Yolonde Entsch and her organisation Empowering Women Empowering Communities, Small World Journeys is proud to be making “Moon Sick Bags” to distribute to Indigenous women in need.
“Moon Sick” refers to the time of the month when women menstruate. In many communities there is a stigma surrounding menstruation and a shame around purchasing these products, especially when the only shop in town might be run by one’s male relatives.
“Moon Sick” pads give women a healthier, more sustainable and cost-effective alternative to disposable sanitary products. The pads come in a bag with a pair of new underwear, a wash cloth, soap and a card detailing the menstrual cycle.
A Rewarding Service Project
Small World Journeys is giving groups the option to make these bags as part of their trip. This service project provides free reusable, washable menstrual pads to girls who miss school when menstruating and face other barriers during that time of the month!
During this activity students (girls AND boys!) master some basic sewing skills, gain an understanding of the complex cultural barriers that affect women in remote communities in the world, and learn about the environmental and social benefits of reusable sanitary products.
The Moon Sick Pads are donated to the women in remote Aboriginal communities — places where costs of sanitary items are prohibitive and these products are gratefully received.