We Gotchya is thrilled to announce that after a 3-year effort, a program is in place to provide free tampons and pads in academic buildings at Northwest Missouri State University!
This program is rolling out during the 2021-22 academic year and this post will be updated as progress is made.
Overview of Program: Thirty-eight product dispensers in women’s restrooms in academic buildings have been converted so that they dispense tampons and pads without coins. The project is being funded by a We Gotchya endowment fund.
Dispensers: It’s actually pretty simple to turn an old tampon/pad dispenser into a free distribution box! All you have to do is remove a little metal tab, and the nobs turn and dispense without any coins! The box shown here was converted at Northwest last year as a prototype of the free-product program.
The signage on the boxes will be different than this first prototype. When we have photos, we’ll post them here. The new signage will be Northwest branded, not We Gotchya branded, with a list of sponsors that have contributed to the endowment, along with information about Northwest’s Food Pantry, where those in need can get bulk supplies of menstrual products.
Endowment: We Gotchya has established an endowment to cover tampon and pad expenses, virtually forever. Our Phase 1 goal was to reach $34,000 to cover the initial 38 dispensers. Each $10,000 is estimated to provide $440 annually. We estimate keeping 38 dispensers stocked will cost about $1,300 annually.
On Sept. 14, 2021, the Northwest Student Senate approved $22,000 toward the endowment, which stood at $12,000 from initial contributions. This got us to our Phase 1 goal!
In December 2021, the Gladys Rickard Trust awarded us $4,475 so that we can add additional dispensers, bringing our grand total to 49 campus dispensers with free tampons and pads. This brought us to our Phase 2 and final goal of providing free menstrual products in all campus buildings.
The fund will cover the indefinitely. If you’d like to contribute to this program to help cover future expansion of the project, please use this link. In the Designation area, click “Other” then write in “We Gotchya”. If you have any questions, please contact Jacquie Lamer (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Carolyn Johnson (email@example.com).