All around the world, girls living through conflict are forced to live in dangerous and unhygienic conditions, with no access to sanitary products.
But no girl, anywhere, should be held back because of her period.
Wesal was 9 years old when her mother was killed in an airstrike on their house in Syria and her father was arrested.
Devastated, her grandmother Azziza took their few remaining possessions and brought Wesal and her three sisters into Jordan in the hope of protecting them from more violence.
With young children to look after and a leg injury from the conflict, Azziza is doing her best to support her young granddaughters in Jordan. But it is very hard, as she is unable to work and they are living off a limited income.
When Wesal and her sisters have their periods, Azziza faces the heartbreaking choice of buying sanitary towels or food for them.
Periods can be a difficult and expensive time for anyone who menstruates. But for thousands of refugees living through conflict or a disaster it can be a monthly emergency. No girl should have to choose between sanitary protection and food.
ActionAid is providing sanitary towels for women, girls and people who menstruate like Wesal in Jordan, and in countries across the world where conflict and wars are stopping them from accessing clean and safe sanitary products.
A regular gift from you could really help refugees like Wesal to manage their periods with dignity.
How your donation can help tackle period poverty
Your donation could help end period poverty for girls like Sylvia, and make sure she can stay in school.
How your donation can help
Your donation could help refugees manage their periods safely
£10 a month could help fund our outreach work towards ending the practice of period shaming
£7 a month could help fund workshops to teach girls how to make their own reusable sanitary towels
£3 a month could provide hygiene kits containing sanitary towels for girls who can’t afford them
Or choose your own amount to give
ActionAid is an international charity that works with women and girls living in poverty.
Our dedicated local staff are changing the world with women and girls. We are ending violence and fighting poverty so that all women, everywhere, can create the future they want.
We operate in rural and urban communities across Asia, Africa and Latin America.
We're committed to ending the cycle of violence in communities around the world, enabling women's economic empowerment, and supporting women's and girls' rights during humanitarian crises.
What we do
When a disaster strikes, women, girls and people who menstruate tell us that amongst the items that they need are sanitary towels, wipes and soap. Without these products, they are forced to use improvised methods to manage their periods including torn pieces of clothing, rags or dirty rugs. This can be ineffective, uncomfortable and unhygienic.
That is why we provide sanitary kits in our humanitarian response work, alongside other essentials including food, water and shelter.
We have distributed sanitary towels in crises as wide-ranging as the Nepal earthquakes of 2015, in Jordan and in Greece as part of our response to the Syrian refugee crisis, in East Africa during the food crisis of 2017 and to Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh in 2017-18.
They are often distributed at our Women Friendly Spaces, which we set up in the aftermath of disasters to provide a safe space for women and girls who may be at risk of violence.
How we use the money you give us
For every £1 we spend:
70p is spent on programme activity, including humanitarian and development work
17p is spent on fundraising
10p is spent on support costs (running the organisation)
3p is spent on campaigning for change
These figures are taken from our expenditure in 2019.
We’re committed to keeping our supporters happy and being open and honest about how we fundraise. To find out more you can read our supporter promise.
Why we’re asking for a monthly gift
All money helps, and we’re grateful for whatever you feel you can afford.
A one-off donation is a fantastic start, but the kind of extreme poverty that many women and girls are facing are long-term problems, and they need long-term solutions. We don’t walk away. We’re committed to making a sustainable difference and changing lives for good.
Regular donations to ActionAid mean that when an emergency strikes we are able to act fast to provide life-saving aid and urgently needed supplies.
A regular gift from you means that we can commit to being there for women and girls who desperately need us, both now and in the future.
Please donate now and help change lives for good.
Top image: Wesal escaped Syria with her grandmother and sisters when conflict broke out. Sharon Lovell
Page updated 23 August 2021