For female students on low incomes, sanitary products are barely affordable, and that ultimately affects their school attendance. Countdown, the Salvation Army and Manurewa MP Louisa Wall are now teaming up to champion their cause, encouraging New Zealanders to put female sanitary products on their Foodbank shopping list.

“Some girls stay home when it’s their period because they cannot afford sanitary products,” Wall said. “Other resort to makeshift and unhygienic measures such as recycling used pads or improvising pads from old clothes, rags, newspapers and other materials, putting them at risk of infection and sickness.”

On the Foodbank Project website (, Kiwis can now purchase a ‘Women’s Hygiene’ bundle for $15 and set it up as a recurring monthly donation.
“We don’t want any of our young women to miss out on learning opportunities. It’s essential students who are making every effort to improve their prospects are not held back because it’s ‘that time of the month’,” said Major Pam Waugh, head of Salvation Army Community Ministries.