OUSA has partnered with the Wā Collective to offer affordable menstrual cups to Otago students.
The Wā Collective is a kiwi social enterprise that fights period poverty by providing $15 medical grade menstrual cups to students across the country. Menstrual cups are reusable and are worn internally to collect period blood rather than absorbing it. They can be emptied as little as every 12 hours.
Wā Cups are subsidised to below cost price via a Bought to Support Programme where anyone can purchase a cup for $49.
The Wā Collective said over a four-year degree, one menstruating student will send about 1000 tampons or pads to the dump, costing $500 or more. Wā cups last ten years.
“A cup is zero waste and a one off payment. Having a Wā Cup means a student will no longer need to buy their monthly supply of menstrual products, saving them hundreds,” Olie Body, the Wā Collective’s Executive Menstruator, said.
“Our purpose is simple, it’s to keep students in class and give them freedom to live a healthy lifestyle by preventing ‘period poverty,’ [the situation where students cannot afford sanitary products throughout their period]”.
Wā Collective research suggests 75% of students have spent less on food because of the cost of tampons and pads and half had blocked their period for financial reasons.
“We set out to deliver a sustainable solution that could bypass the monthly unsustainable subscription-like model that people currently [are used to]. By partnering with us, OUSA and Otago Uni are part of a progressive, national conversation, no strings attached."
OUSA Welfare Officer Abigail Clark said, “OUSA is committed to helping students out of period poverty, and we see partnering with Wā Collective as an essential step towards this goal”.
To get a cup, just go to the Wā Collective’s website and select OUSA as your pick-up option.