Period Health Events Educate Young Women

Morgan Pemberton, Student Reporter

The stigmas that surround menstrual health are leaving youths too embarrassed to talk about it, and two Marshall students hope to help end that stigma with their period health events. 

“About half of the world menstruates, but somehow this topic remains surrounded by stigma and embarrassment,” Rachel Lee, a fourth-year medical student, said. “Lack of education has led females being fearful and uncertain about their periods, and this can have many implications down the road.”

These events are being held by college students who hope to help educate young women about their bodies. 

“Growing up, I knew very little about menstrual health,” Brianna Roberts Canales, fourth year medical student, said. “A mix of fear, cultural differences, and limited education contributed to my lack of knowledge. I was ashamed to ask questions. I was fortunate enough to find resources in my community, but I recognize that some people are not as lucky. Health illiteracy negatively affects patients’ ability to properly care for themselves, engage in safe practices and advocate for themselves. The period education project’s goal is to help bridge the knowledge gaps of underserved youths in our community.” 

These events will teach young girls from ages nine to 13 about female anatomy, their periods and how to track them and their health. The events also want to teach them about the normal and abnormal menses (or discharge) and to safely manage their periods. 

“The biggest outcome I wish to see from this event is for the participants to leave empowered by the information we’re able to provide about their bodies,” Lee said. “Our goal is for them to feel more comfortable with their periods and confident enough to be able to teach other young females. Being able to advocate for both normal and abnormal menstruation will hopefully improve women’s health overall.”

There are going to be two free events held open to nine to 13-year-olds and parents are strongly encouraged to attend as well. The first event will be held at 6 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 12, at Gallaher Village Public Library, which is located at 368 Norway Ave. The second event will be held at 6 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 26, at the main branch of the Cabell County Public Library, which is located 455 Ninth Street in Huntington.