NCJW continually looks for ways to identify and fulfill needs in our community. In recent years, we’ve highlighted hunger in Maine. People who receive SNAP benefits — food stamps — cannot use them to buy certain things. Among these are tampons and sanitary pads. Most NCJW members are women, after all, and we can identify with women of child-bearing age struggling to meet their most basic sanitary needs. To that end, we are funding a pilot project to provide feminine hygiene products to clients of the Jewish Family Services Food Pantry, which also serves many newcomers to Maine who do not qualify for government assistance. NCJW Board Member Roberta Gordon first brought the idea to the Board. We developed a partnership with JFS, which found PERIOD (formerly Camions of Care) in Portland, Oregon, could provide reasonably priced products. PERIOD is a global, youth-run nonprofit that strives to provide and celebrate menstrual hygiene through advocacy, education, and service. The first shipment of products arrived in November, 2016, at the JFS Food Pantry, which distributed packages to 150 women. NCJW is excited to support this initiative to help provide menstrual hygiene products to women in need.
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