Claire Fenerty

Last Saturday SVS hosted a sanitary product collection. The collection took place at Tesco from 10:30-14:30 to support Storehouse Fife, our local food bank. I interviewed Flora Rowe (SVS Head of Fundraising) and Natasha Bateman (SVS Convenor) to discuss the SVS sanitary product collection.


CF: Why is SVS putting on this collection on Saturday in front of Tesco?

FR: We are collecting feminine hygiene products because of the huge numbers of women that rely on food banks for sanitary products. Approximately 1 in 10 young women struggle to afford sanitary products, and it is estimated that over 5000 women in the UK are collecting sanitary products from food banks on a monthly basis. These things are highly expensive.

NB: We have decided to make our collection point in front of Tesco because Tesco has enrolled a new program which pays government taxes on feminine hygiene products to make these valued necessities more accessible. We appreciate Tesco’s efforts and we want to encourage this sort of charitable thinking in St Andrews.


CF: How can people contribute to your sanitary product collection?

NB: The first way we would like to encourage people to get involved is by raising awareness. In addition to collecting sanitary products, we will also be handing out flyers with further information at the collection site.

FR: And aside from donating products, we will be accepting cash donations as well. The proceeds will go to purchasing more sanitary products for distribution at Storehouse Fife. Our goal is to receive one pound per person, and while we realize this is ambitious, we are determined to make our best effort to support local women who are in need of hygiene products. No one should be deprived of this basic necessity.

NB: People can also participate in local volunteering through SVS by getting in touch through our website. [Website listed below.]


CF: Why is providing sanitary products for women in poverty an issue important to you?

FR: As women, we have a big engagement with this. When you discuss these types of issues, men often do not consider the costs of basic necessities. It was especially frustrating for me to see data estimates, about 40% of UK girls have felt that their period has kept them from leading a full and active life at school.

NB: I thought food banks were just for food, but for our harvest festival giveaway, sanitary products were the first items to go. It is so important for people’s dignity to have access to the basics.


Even though the event has already taken place, here’s some further information about how you can get involved:

Interested in getting involved in our local food bank? Here’s the Storehouse Fife website:

Wanting to explore more volunteering opportunities with SVS? You can sign up to volunteer on this project and more here:

Check out the Facebook event here: