Many of you have seen the Always commercial that encourages you to buy the product to support their program that sends pads to girls in Africa who do not have access to, or the money, to buy these products.
But these are disposable products that have to be continuously supplied. So basically they send a bunch and a few girls can attend school during their period that month (a huge barrier for these girls is that they cannot attend school if they don't have the protection they need), but what about when they aren't supplied with the pads..."Sorry no school for you, better luck next month!" And lets not forget that this generates a lot of waste for villages who do not have curb-side trash service.
Of course there's a better alternative. The Good 4 Girls program supplies reusable cloth menstrual pads to these girls. I know, I know, you think it's gross right? Well it really isn't! I've been using cloth for years and it's gaining popularity in the United States. A lot of women find that they chaffe less and feel cleaner and drier with cloth. It is also more breathable. I've had the added benefit of my horrible cramps disappearing since switching to cloth. Not possible you say? Sure it is, and many other women have had the same thing happen. Let's not forget that the female genitals are an open, exposed mucous membrane that is in contact with many chemicals for about 25% of a woman's fertile years. That's a lot of chemicals leaching into your body! It took exactly 3 months for my body to flush the toxins, but I've been cramp-free for several years now.
Even if you don't feel the urge to try cloth, consider donating to this program. It only costs $2 to send one pad to a girl in need. $10 will send 5 pads, which can possibly be all a girl needs throughout her entire period. These are easy to handwash and hang-dry, by the way. Think about it, $10 will supply a girl menstrual products that will last her entire school career!
I just ordered 9 pads from this work-at-home mom:
I was impressed by the quality and that they are more affordable than most cloth pads out there! I will definitely be ordering more and donating what I can when I have a little extra paypal just sitting there. :-)