By Jade Koenigs, GCC Girls Inc. leadership and advocacy specialist
Girls Inc. middle and high school students are champions of leadership and advocacy. While the O’Keeffe middle schoolers are currently researching community action projects to pursue in the Leadership and Community Action encore class, the high schoolers are establishing an advocacy campaign to reduce period stigma, and provide period products and period trash receptacles in every bathroom at East High School. This work is central to the core of what Girls Inc. does in a very BOLD way.
Shining a spotlight at the high school level, these members are the epitome of leadership as they organize their own club and serve as an inspiration for the middle school members. Elena Cunningham, a sophomore, and Ellie Huttleston, a junior, are the co-chairs that lead the charge by running the meetings and determining the direction of the club.
This year, the club decided to address the lack of period products in the bathrooms, and a further dedicated taskforce emerged. These six members first met in December for an enlightening conversation. They started off by stating some shocking statistics relating to periods and commented that many students who have periods use different gender and nongender bathrooms — most of which do not carry menstrual products.
Vowing to rectify this injustice, the Girls Inc. club officially started a campaign to provide products and trash receptacles in every bathroom at East. They also are working to increase awareness, spread knowledge and reduce stigmas associated with the menstrual cycle.
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