The Go Green for the Red program, which provides free reusable period products, is open to all WashU students (while supplies lasts).
The goal of this program is to provide access to reusable period products where there may have previously been barriers, and to encourage new users to try reusable period products. Ultimately, participation will support the case for future funding and help identify infrastructural and social barriers to adoption.
Students can request products during fall and spring semesters: August 31 – October 31, 2022; spring semester dates TBD. Fulfilment details will be provided upon sign up.
For anyone who is already a menstrual cup or cloth pad user and is interested in offering support to new users, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are not a WashU student or are not able to register within the posted windows, you can access support for period products through the St. Louis Alliance for Period Supplies. You can also purchase a discounted menstrual cup through June Cup for $6.
Pay it forward! If you already use a cup or benefited from the free products in the program, consider donating to the St. Louis Alliance for Period Supplies (with the money you saved from your reusable products!) to someone who is experiencing period poverty. Donate directly or send them a cup (6141 Etzel Ave, St. Louis, MO, 63133)!
Thank you to the partners who have helped sponsor this program.
Frequently Asked Questions
Environmental & Financial Impact: Avoid buying and disposing of thousands of tampons and pads over your menstruating lifespan! No more trips to the store to restock your supply; no more boxes, wrappers, or applicators either!
Independence: Break free from reliance on expensive disposable products. Pandemic-induced scarcity? No problem! Tight budget this month? Spend your money on something else.
Health: Disposable period products have a variety of chemicals that are often undisclosed to consumers including fragrance and deodorants, dioxins and bleaching agent residue. Both the chemicals and materials in disposable products can cause rashes and irritation in sensitive parts. Reusable options allow for airflow and don’t restrict vaginal moisture, which could leave the vagina susceptible to infection.
Participants in the Go Green for the Red Ambassador Program determine how involved they want to be. Active participation is not a requirement for receiving free supplies.
To spread awareness of reusable period products, we ask that participants share their experience and new knowledge with their peers (to the degree they feel comfortable).
We also ask that participants respond to occasional surveys that will track use over time, identify social and infrastructure barriers to adoption, and understand the need for these products among the student population.
Participants can increase involvement by being active in support forums for those getting started and by advocating for resources to support the ongoing provision of reusable period products to students who request them.
Kits include 1 menstrual cup and 4 reusable cotton pads. Participants have the option to select components of the kit or the full kit. Please select the option with the items that you believe you will use as supplies are limited!
Menstrual cups are included in the reusable period products kit. They are made from medical grade silicone, offer up to 12 hours of leak-free protection, and are reusable for up to 5 years. More information about sizing, cleaning, and use can be found here.
Reusable cotton pads can be hand or machine washed. They have “wings” that wrap around the underwear to secure them in place.
Resources & Further Reading:
- Periods are a Pain, but less so with Reusable Products
- Go Green for the Red: A Panel on Reusable Period Products (recording from March 22, 2021)
- St. Louis Alliance for Period Supplies, an initiative of the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank
- Dignity Period: a St. Louis-based nonprofit that manufactures and distributes reusable pads to women and girls in Ethiopia and St. Louis, accompanied by educational programs on menstrual health. Dignity Period is our supplier for reusable pads.