International Women’s Day: Greta Scacchi helps fundraise for period poverty

By - Wednesday 21st March, 2018

The Hollywood A-lister was in attendance for a charity tea party at Croydon’s Oval Tavern

Jackie Morrison, founder of We-STAP, and Gill Manly, organiser of the IWD tea party, with donations.
Photo by Katie Rose, used with permission.

On Saturday 10th March, International Women’s Day 2018 was celebrated in Croydon with a tea party at the Oval Tavern in support of local charity We-STAP (We Supply Toiletries And Products For Women In Need). The event was attended by Mayor Toni Letts and also received support from Hollywood star Greta Scacchi, invited by one of the organisers. The event set out to raise awareness of period poverty, and to fundraise and to collect products for local women.

Mayor Toni Letts.
Photo by Katie Rose, used with permission.

Period poverty is increasing across the UK as women and girls on low incomes find themselves unable to afford the menstrual products they require. Awareness of the crisis increased after it featured in Ken Loach’s 2016 film I, Daniel Blake, and in December 2017, charity Plan International found that one in 10 girls and young women in the UK between the ages of 14 and 21 had at times been unable to afford sanitary products. The BBC’s report on this finding was headlined ‘surviving period poverty with socks and tissue’. Since then, reports in the national press have also drawn attention to how period poverty affects girls’ education and in the capital, the ‘buy one, give one’ campaign was launched in January by the company Hey Girls.

Jackie Morrison explains the work of We-STAP to Greta Scacchi.
Photo by Katie Rose, used with permission.

We-STAP helps those affected in Croydon and also supplies other basic toiletries. Jackie Morrison, its founder, is a former health visitor. Her awareness of the issue began some years ago when she worked with a client whose abusive partner would not allow her any access to money. The woman was therefore unable to buy anything for herself, including tampons, which Jackie supplied.

Jackie and Mayor Toni Letts described work being done in Croydon to a supportive audience. Tesco Thornton Heath is a We-STAP collection point for donations, with Matthews Yard in Croydon town centre set to become a second one shortly. Local activist and musician Gill Manly provided cakes, and Greta Scacchi’s presence was very much appreciated.

This was a most valuable and empowering way to mark International Women’s Day in Croydon.

To find out about how you can help the work of We-STAP in Croydon, click here.

Liz Sheppard-Jones

Liz Sheppard-Jones

Writer and editor. Views personal, not representative of editorial policy.

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