At LENA, we celebrated Menstrual Hygiene Day 2016 for the first time as a company! This was a big day for us, and equally for women around the world.
2015 was named the ‘Year of the Period’ and since, women and men worldwide have been recognizing the importance of menstrual hygiene more than ever.
Over 400 organizations took part of the Menstrual Hygiene Day Alliance this year, with over 180 related events organized. The purpose of this special day was to highlight menstruation-related challenges that women around the world face every day. Our hope is that we will reach the point where every woman will be able to manage her menstruation hygienically and with the privacy, safety, and dignity that she deserves. There are some fundamental milestones on the way to this vision, which include breaking down the menstrual taboo, generating awareness of current conditions for many women, and ensuring that all women have access to healthy and conscious menstrual products.
At LENA, we are proud to have been a part of both the advocacy and access roles this Menstrual Hygiene Day. In fact, we could not be prouder to have donated 500 LENA cups to women and girls in Doula, Cameroon, in collaboration with the Community Development Network! These LENA cups were distributed to women in poor and marginalized areas within the community, in an effort to provide them with a healthy and conscious menstrual option, along with the education on how to use the product. The access to these LENA cups can play a key role in giving girls the opportunity to stay in school and normalize menstruation within their community.
In addition to this donation, we were ecstatic to have offered LENA cups at a 30% discount at home on Amazon, in an effort to provide an affordable, accessible option to as many women as possible.
In terms of advocacy, at LENA we deeply care about improving the lives of women and we understand that menstrual hygiene bridges many topics; education, discrimination, opportunity, empowerment, and more – we appreciate that each women’s take on the importance of menstruation means something unique for each and every one of us. For that very reason, we decided to reach out to the menstrual cup community for their views and thoughts around menstruation. The feedback was overwhelming and inspiring!
THERE IS NOTHING MORE POWERFUL THAN HAVING A VOICE.
WE ASKED WOMEN WHO INSPIRE US TO SHARE WHAT MENSTRUAL HYGIENE MEANS TO THEM.
“For me, menstruation symbolizes the cycle of life. It is through menstruation that women are able to give life and continue the existence of our species. It is a part of us; a part that shows we are healthy and have transitioned into an important role within the world.
As women, we should not feel ashamed or embarrassed of our periods. They show us that our body is functioning as it should be; cycling through the stages of potentially creating life, moving forward and taking us to new places we have not yet been. To have a happy, healthy period means we have the potential to bring new and amazing things into this world.” - Amanda Nagel, LENA girl -
“Growing up, my period was always stressful. My heavy flow, blood clots, and cramps were so bad that I was prescribed Mefenamic Acid throughout high school, and I was exhausted constantly with severe iron deficiency (while everyone assumed I was just lazy, adding more stress). It wasn't until about five years ago that I discovered Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Acupuncture, and Reiki. With the help of my TCM practitioner, I have changed many aspects of my life - most importantly my diet and my connection to the earth. These days, even though I track my cycle, I am often surprised when I begin menstruating. I rarely have cramps, very little PMS symptoms, and my cycle is much more reliable. I actually look forward to menstruating, because it reminds me of our connection to nature, to each other as women, and reconnects me to the moment, to my own body.” - Jessie Davis, LENA girl -
IT WASN'T UNTIL MY SISTER DEVELOPED ANOREXIA, THAT I FULLY APPRECIATED MENSTRUATION. UPON HER WEIGH LOSS, SHE LOST HER PERIOD TOO. IT WAS EYE-OPENING TO SEE HER BODY SIGNALING THAT SHE WASN'T WELL AND SIMILARLY, IT WAS A SYMBOL OF HEALTH WHEN HER CYCLE RETURNED. TO THIS DAY, I HAVE SO MUCH MORE APPRECIATION FOR MY HEALTHY MENSTRUAL CYCLE AND LOVE THE COMMUNITY OF WOMEN THAT ARE SPEAKING OUT ABOUT THIS TOPIC. MENSTRUATION IS NOT ONLY NATURAL BUT IT IS A GIFT. I AM LOOKING FORWARD TO THE TIME WHEN THE ENTIRE WORLD NOT ONLY ACCEPTS MENSTRUATION, BUT EMBRACES IT."- Stephanie Smith, LENA girl -
“My period just returned 3 months ago after having twins 15 months ago. My whole attitude about menstruation changed after I had my first son 3 years ago and started using cloth pads. I just bought my Lena cup a couple months ago and love it! I honestly look forward to getting my period. I don’t understand why people think it’s gross to bleed. It’s a normal and natural process and it actually offends me a little bit when people say it’s gross or disgusting or other rude comments. It’s something we have to live with, so why not just embrace it and make it more enjoyable by using comfortable and safe products? I’m amazed by the female body and all the things it can do, especially following the natural unmedicated birth of my twins. Best experience of my life and so much respect that I have for THIS body!” - Gabrielle Felice -