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Period Poverty: 1 In 5 American Women Deal With It And James Van Der Beek Is Trying To Make That 0 In 5

As a young woman, getting your period can be traumatic enough without having to wonder where—and if—you can access menstrual products. One in five teenagers in the United States have missed school because that don’t have that access.

The campaign to end period poverty is growing more by the day, and now James Van Der Beek is joining the fight, drawing attention to this important issue that prevents girls from partaking in everyday activities and going to school. Van Der Beek, who is a father of one son and four daughters, has partnered with Always and Walmart for the #EndPeriodPoverty campaign to donate up to 1.5 million pads to girls in need. As part of the campaign, Always is donating a month’s supply of pads to girls in need.

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In this country, right now, 1 in 5 girls are missing school and extracurricular activities they love because they lack access to period products. This is not okay. And pretending this problem doesn’t exist isn’t going to make it any better. That’s why I’ve #partnered with @always_brand and @walmart on their mission to raise awareness and #EndPeriodPoverty. Here’s how it works: Watch the video in the link in my bio about these incredible, inspiring girls, and for every view during the month of January, a pad donation will be made up to ONE MILLION pads to keep girls in the activities they love! On top of that, for every comment or share of this post, they’ll donate a month’s supply of pads to girls in need, up to an additional HALF A MILLION pads! So let’s get talking about this - because it’s not just about pads, it’s about bringing attention to this issue and chipping away at the stigma around something that is natural, healthy, necessary and unavoidable. Time to normalize what’s normal!

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On Instagram, Van Der Beek shared his involvement in the cause, encouraging followers to join the conversation and end the stigma around menstruation: “It’s not just about pads, it’s about bringing attention to this issue and chipping away at the stigma around something that is natural, healthy, necessary and unavoidable. Time to normalize what’s normal!”

Van Der Beek told Page Six that he was “impressed” that he was asked to join the campaign.

“I am a typical dumb guy, I did not know one in five girls deal with ‘period poverty’ in the US,” the 42-year-old actor said.

In a press release, the “Dawson’s Creek” and “Don’t Trust the B— in Apt. 23” actor emphasized how important it was for men to be aware and take action.

“As a dad to four girls and a son, I wanted to bring awareness to an issue that most men rarely think about and inspire other fathers to take an active role in tackling it. Period poverty is happening in our own communities, and the effects are far-reaching. No child should have to miss out on crucial childhood activities because they don’t have access to period products,” he said in a press release.

“When I was young, extra-curricular activities like drama not only gave me an outlet, they saved my life. And led to a career. So I’m thrilled to do whatever I can to chip away at the stigma surrounding this subject, spark conversations, and help increase access to period products so that girls can stay involved in the confidence-building activities they love without fear or needless shame. “

Patricia Grisafi

Written by Patricia Grisafi