The Co-op Group has joined a campaign to help tackle period poverty.
The retailer will sell Hey Girls sanitary products on a ‘buy one, give one’ model, meaning that for every pack purchased, another is donated to someone in need.
A social enterprise, Hey Girls was founded 18 months ago by Celia Hodson with the help of her two daughters, Kate and Becky. To date, it has donated over 3.9 million environmentally friendly period products to food banks across the UK.
Hey Girls Day Time and Overnight Sani pads and Menstrual Cups are now on the shelves of 184 Co-op Group stores across the UK.
The Hey Girls Sani Pads (£3.25) are made from natural bamboo and corn fibre, and are chlorine and dioxin bleach free. The menstrual cup (£8.95) is made from 100% medical grade silicone and hypoallergenic and is latex, Phthalate, BPA and Dioxin free.
Ms Hodson said: “Gaining a listing in one of the world’s largest consumer co-operatives, owned by millions of members, gives us a real buzz. Co-op customers selecting a Hey Girls product in store know the more period products we sell, the more period product we can donate to their local community. Box for Box.
“Simple – that’s why we’re different from all the other product manufacturers and why our values align completely with the Co-op.”
Hey Girls has received financial support from the Big Issue Invest (BII) Power Up programme for 2019, a scheme aiming to enable up to 20 Scottish social ventures to access loan funding of up to £50,000 over the next two years, alongside mentoring support. The funding will enable the social enterprise to grow and purchase the stock needed to supply the stores. Its products were also listed in both ASDA and Waitrose last August with the support of a £50,000 investment and mentorship from BII.
Victoria Haigh, category buyer for the Co-op Group, said: “At Co-op we know that period poverty is a much wider issue across the UK and internationally. We are proud of our partnership with Hey Girls, particularly as their ‘buy one, give one’ initiative aligns with our community values. We are delighted to list the brand at the Co-op knowing that the products will give back to the wider community.”
The products are also available in other co-operative retail societies within the FRTS buying group, including the Central England Co-operative. Chief executive Debbie Robinson said: “Period poverty is something that impacts women across not just the UK but the entire world.
“This is why we are delighted to be able to support a great social enterprise like Hey Girls and its efforts to tackle the issue through its ground-breaking scheme.
“As a community retailer, this fantastic gesture by Hey Girls perfectly sits with our values and principles and our efforts, with the help of our customers and members, to make a real difference for our communities.”