A brilliant initiative.
Lidl is set to become the world’s first major retailer to offer free period products in store.
The company’s new partnership with Homeless Period Ireland and The Simon Communities of Ireland will ensure that each of the country’s stores offers free pads and tampons to those affected by period poverty.
The new initiative will see the retailer offer a coupon for one free box of pads or tampons per customer each month through their app, Lidl Plus.
For those who don’t have a smartphone, the retailer will also make quarterly donations to The Simon Communities to ensure people among homeless communities can access products too.
Period poverty is becoming an increasingly prominent issue across Ireland, with a recent Plan International survey showing that almost half of young girls are struggling to pay for period products.
Earlier this year, Labour senator Rebecca Moynihan introduced new legislation that would make period products free in public spaces, an anticipated law that was met with much support outside of government buildings.
“I’m delighted that Lidl Ireland have partnered with Homeless Period Ireland in order to take meaningful action against period poverty in Ireland. This initiative will ensure that those most in need will have the ability to access suitable period products,” said Claire Hunt, Founder of Homeless Period Ireland.
“In a first world country like ours no one should have to choose between feeding themselves and their family or buying period products. In collaboration with Homeless Period Ireland, Lidl Ireland are taking the lead in restoring dignity to people across the entire country.
“It is my hope that in due course much anticipated legislation and measures will be implemented and ultimately Homeless Period Ireland and indeed initiatives like this one should no longer have to exist.”
Aoife Clarke, Head of Communications for Lidl Ireland, added: “At Lidl, it has long been our priority to support the communities we operate in across the country, and that has been even more prevalent since the onset of the pandemic.”
“Since learning more about the growing issue of period poverty in Ireland, we’ve passionately felt that as a family retailer it’s in our communities’ best interest to support young girls and women who are affected by this issue.
“As a long-time supporter of women in sport, our female workforce, and now women and girls across the country affected by this issue, we are pleased to partner with Homeless Period Ireland to make this unprecedented commitment to provide free period products for those who need them whilst Government legislation is being worked on.
“The guiding principle of this initiative is the inherent respect for the dignity of all those concerned, and it is our hope that it will have an impact those who would otherwise have to use less suitable materials or none at all.”
Those who want to access free period products by the Lidl app can do so from May 3.