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Galway City sports clubs join forces for ‘Period Positive’ initiative


From this week's Galway City Tribune

From this week's Galway City Tribune

Galway City sports clubs join forces for ‘Period Positive’ initiative Galway City sports clubs join forces for ‘Period Positive’ initiative

A unique partnership between five Galway sports clubs aims to remove one of the reasons that girls are dropping out of sport in such large numbers once they transfer to secondary school.

One in five girls quit sport when they leave primary school – four times more than the boys, a difference that was exacerbated during the Covid years when fun competitions or blitzes appealing to the less competitive had to be sidelined.

Embarrassment over leaking during a period and not having sanitary pads or tampons is cited as one factors in those drop-out rates around the age of puberty. The fact that there are no facilities to dispose of period products also leads to them being flushed down the toilet causing a major headache for sports clubs maintaining clubhouses due to blockages.

Five clubs in the city will now offer girls free period products from each coach and all clubhouse toilets will have wall dispensers providing eco-friendly Fab Little Bags, disposal bags to ensure easy, discreet, and responsible disposal of used products. Girls will know that the sanitary products are contained in a bag beside the first aid kit, and they are free to go and take one as necessary, explains Martina Dolan, who is leading the initiative on behalf of the Liam Mellows Camogie Club.

“It’s something really simple but it’s an acknowledgment to kids that we’re aware of what they’re going through once a month and that it is as natural and reaching for something in the first aid kit, so there’s no stigma, it’s a pledge from us to them that they aren’t going to get caught short,” explains the underage coach.

“Sometimes it’s good for a coach to know when a girl has a period because it does affect their training, their energy, it might explain a lack of enthusiasm, so we can keep it on our radar.”

They hope to secure sponsorship from local businesses to pay for each kit bag, which cost €28, as well as the refills and have one available for every team head coach. The project is all about keeping girls in sport for that crucial age between 12 and 15.

(Photo by Don Soules: members of the Liam Mellows Camogie Club, who won the Connacht title last year).
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see the February 23 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can support our journalism and buy a digital edition HERE.

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