WaterAid has launched a subscription service offering menstrual hygiene products in a bid to deal with a challenging regular giving environment.
Fempowered, which was launched yesterday to mark Menstrual Hygiene Day, is a service that allows subscribers to choose between a range of organic, sustainably produced period products that are delivered to their doors for £10 a month.
All profits will go to WaterAid’s work in helping women and girls around the world to deal with their periods safely and with dignity.
Marcus Missen, director of communications and fundraising at WaterAid, told Third Sector: "We set ourselves the challenge of developing a sustainable, scalable source of unrestricted funding in response to the fact that it’s increasingly challenging to drive and sustain regular giving.
"At its heart, Fempowered is a value-exchange regular giving product that’s very much about the audience, what they want and what they will find valuable."
He said the charity had decided to offer the best menstrual hygiene products it could find, putting the focus on the quality of the product rather than its significance to the charity.
"Rather than ‘charity does menstrual hygiene’, it’s Fempowered in partnership with WaterAid," Missen adde.
The service would behave like a social enterprise, despite being part of the charity, he said.
"We’re taking a minimal viable product to market, we’re going to see how it goes and respond to it in an agile way, and we’ll be thinking about what’s the best model to use to sustain it going forwards," he said.
"It’s stretching our boundaries, it's opening up our thinking in terms of what different opportunities might look like."
Missen said there would be a big subscription drive in the next month and, if that was successful, the charity would look into scaling up the product.
The product was launched alongside Peaky Bleeders, a tongue-in-cheek film the charity produced for Menstrual Hygiene Day, which shows women fighting against euphemisms for periods.