Katja founded Social Period e.V. together with her partner Undine.
We asked her a few questions to give you more information about what the association actually does.
Thank you Katja for taking the time for this interview. I know that you're not only doing some voluntary work. You're doing quite a lot, really.
First of all, please talk about SocialPeriod and who do you gyus support.
Katja: Social Period e.V. is a non-profit organization that fights period poverty and primarily supports homeless people. We try to make period products easier for everyone to access and to destigmatize the topic of periods. In addition, we would like to do educational work and encourage people to deal with the topic. We help them by setting up donation boxes in various drugstores and supermarkets where period products can be donated. Afterwards we distribute these to social institutions such as women's shelters and shelters for the homeless.
Your success is remarkable, necessary and at the same time shocking that the need for free period products in Germany is so high.
Where have you set up donation boxes in the meantime? How many supporters do you have and above all: Where do you see Social Period in the future?
Katja: We set up donation boxes in many districts in Berlin. Including Mitte, Prenzlauer Berg, Friedrichshain and Neukölln. The boxes are in various drugstores, such as in a Budni branch on Schönhauser Allee, various DM markets or grocery stores, such as Edeka in Hohenschönhausen. We have also been able to convince book shops and cafés to join our project. We aim to expand our association to other cities in order to become active and educate against period poverty. The aim is to make menstrual articles freely accessible so that everyone who needs them can also get them.
For understanding: Your donation boxes can be found in drugstores. Customers can donate menstrual products there, which you then distribute. What does that look like in concrete terms?
Katja: Our volunteers empty the donation boxes in the shops after a certain period of time and then take these donations to the social organizations with which we are working.
About three months ago we introduced Social Period to nevernot for the first time while you started your petition "Period Poverty: Free Access to Menstrual Products". You have now collected 35,000 signatures*. The petition is addressed directly to Dr. Franziska Giffey. Did she respond to you yet? What's next?
Katja: Dr. Giffey has not yet commented on our petition. However, we try to approach other political actors to make our intentions heard.
You are an association which means you don't only need donations but also a lot of voluntary support. How can volunteers get in contact with Social Period?
Anyone who would like to get involved and support us is welcome to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Every support is welcomed. Otherwise we are also very happy about monetary donations.
Here is also a donation link.