Ode to a new year and a new ‘cycle’

After 29 years, I’ve learned that a grandiose approach to my New Year’s resolution is almost guaranteed to fail. It’s time to get very real and very honest. I’ve decided that my first step into 2013 will be one toward an eco positive period. As in, my monthly cycle kind-of-period.


You heard me.


Roughly 20 billion pads, tampons and applicators are trashed and sent to landfills across North America every year. Lunapads is a Canadian company that produces and provides pads, panty liners and the diva cup for all of your period needs. Get this – they’re reusable. You can wash, dry and reapply month in and month out. According to Lunapads, those who have already made the switch are diverting more than 1 million disposable pads from landfills each month. It’s a way to introduce a sense of responsibility between you, your body, and the planet.


Founders Madeleine Shaw and Suzanne Siemens are from my hometown of Vancouver, British Columbia and belong to a vibrant and world-changing community of Canadian entrepreneurs working to make the world a better place. Props, ladies! They’re not only driving change through business and sustainability, they’re a social mission-based team working to empower women across East Africa through their One4Her program.


One4Her’s primary purpose is to improve access to education for girls while supporting local employment for women in Uganda. Every time you purchase a One4Her product, Lunapads provides a girl in need with a Uganda-made AFRIpad (another social enterprise with whom they’ve partnered) to support her education.


Before I discovered Lunapads, I had no idea how many girls were affected because they didn’t have access to menstrual products. In most cases, when a young girl in East Africa is without these products, she has to stay home from school for up to seven days until she finishes her period. Those missed days really add up. The more school they miss, the higher the chance that these girls might not finish. Girls who don’t complete their education marry earlier, earn less, and are at greater risk of contracting HIV or dying in childbirth. By providing girls with the products to ensure they can attend school every day without fear of embarrassment or unwanted attention, Lunapads is helping shape their future in a seriously positive way.


Making the switch to Lunapads and away from disposable products can be an empowering and important decision. With it comes an adjustment and learning period (uh, no pun intended.) Lunapads arms you with tips, advice and how-to videos to help get you on your way to a more “eco positive period.” Go ahead and learn more while you consider merging your end-of-year giving with an actual switch in how you approach your own cycle.

Happy New Year!

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