INWOOD, Manhattan (PIX11) — Inflation and the high cost of living are impacting people. It’s a phenomenon of what some are calling “period poverty,” which is inadequate access to menstrual products and education. It’s far from new, but it has been exacerbated by the pandemic and inflation.
Chantal Alison-Konteh was a teacher in Harlem and saw some of her students struggling to afford period products and their moms as well. She decided to do something about it.
Neffatiti Anderson, 30, from Crown Heights, is a mother of two and says like many moms she puts the needs of her young sons first. Lately, when it’s her time of the month, Anderson will have to prioritize between diapers, food and menstrual pads. Anderson said a place called Her Village Inc. has been a lifesaver.
It’s a nonprofit founded by Alison-Konteh, who has given period supplies and diapers to more than 250 people a month. She started the distribution in 2020. So far, she’s given away over 285,000 period supplies to close to 3,000 people in need in New York City.
Alison-Konteh said the needs are growing every day, aggravated by inflation and the high cost of living in New York City. She said young people tell her they skip school or struggle to show up for activities because of the problem.
On Long Island, the Allied Foundation is a nonprofit that has distributed over 100,000 period supplies since May 2021, and the need keeps growing there, too.
Olivia Weinand, 42, from the Bronx, is a mother of four teenage daughters who says every month buying period supplies is a huge expense. Her Village Inc. provides her family relief.
Alison-Konteh said she needs financial support to keep her doors open and needs volunteers.