Menstrual periods are normal, yet there is a stigma around talking about them and the financial stress they may cause.

Medha Maroju, a Novi High School junior, hopes to help end period poverty with the Carefree Campaign, which she launched this fall with classmates Vaishnavi Jagalur and Varnika Chandra. 

Among their goals: make pads and tampons free and accessible in schools and add their voices to an increasingly louder call for removal of the tax on menstrual hygiene products.

“I think the biggest thing is educating people on it, because a lot of people don’t understand the severity of period poverty,” Maroju said. “They just expect it in major cities where there are a lot of poor people, but it can also exist in suburbs. We’re trying to increase access to period products for everybody, regardless of income.”

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