United Way and Meridian partner to end period poverty in Niagara

Niagara, ON, May 1, 2024 – Every month too many people in Niagara are forced to choose between buying safe menstrual products and other basic necessities. No one should have to make that choice. United Way’s Period Promise campaign is helping by providing free menstrual products – so no one has to choose.

One in six (17%) Canadians who menstruate have personally experienced period poverty; this rises to one in four (25%) if their household earns less than $40,000 a year. One in five (20%) who menstruate say they may not afford period products at some point in the next 12 months, and 7% say this is very likely. (Statistics Canada)

Period poverty is an equity issue that we have the power to address. United Way’s Period Promise campaign is committed to making it easier for everyone to access the product they need, when they need it. By providing menstrual products to community partners who work directly with community members, Period Promise is making a significant impact across Niagara. The more products we can provide, the more people we can help. Community partners include food banks, drop-in centers, shelters, schools and outreach organizations. United Way partners with a wide variety of service providers to ensure these products are accessible to anyone who needs them.

“Period products are a basic necessity, yet too many individuals in Niagara are faced with the difficult choice of purchasing these products or affording other essentials like food for their families” says United Way Niagara CEO Frances Hallworth. “Access to these products alleviates stress, and helps eliminate barriers for individuals to fully participate in their community. Last year’s campaign was an incredible success thanks to our partnership with Meridian, and we are grateful to have them back on board this year as presenting sponsor. Their support enables to help significantly more individuals in Niagara, but the need is high and we are looking to the community to help.”

Meridian has been a dedicated community partner in Niagara for many years, extending support to United Way and many other charitable causes for decades. Their commitment to United Way was recognized at United Way’s Campaign Celebration in March when they were awarded the 2023 Community Partner of the Year Award. This year, Meridian has returned as the 2024 Period Promise presenting sponsor with an investment of $5,000 to support our community’s well-being, exemplifying their commitment to equity by actively addressing period poverty across Niagara.

“With our Meridian for Good Strategy leading the way, we will continue to look for ways to build up the communities in which we live and work with the resources and support that is most needed.” Say Dan MacKay, District Vice President, Meridian Niagara. “Last’s years efforts made a huge impact across the region, and we are proud to once again partner with United Way as the presenting sponsor for the 2024 Period Promise campaign.”

With the support of our sponsors, United Way is accepting donations of period products from May 1 to 10th at any Meridian Credit Union branch across Niagara in support of Period Promise. Individuals and businesses can also host their own product drives or to make a bigger impact, make a financial donation.

Thanks to strategic partnerships and volume discounts, United Way is able to purchase more products for less. For an average cost of $3.55, United Way can provide enough products to support one person for one month. For reference, at retail cost the same amount of product will cost approximately $10.98.

For more information about Period Promise or to donate, visit www.periodpromiseniagara.com.