Friends who went to school in Letchworth together launch project in aid of Stevenage Women’s Refuge

Sanya Masood and Sophie Harrold, pictured outside St Francis College in Letchworth where they studie

Sanya Masood and Sophie Harrold, pictured outside St Francis College in Letchworth where they studied together, have been collecting sanitary products for women in need. - Credit: Archant

Two friends campaigning to provide homeless women with sanitary products have launched a third project to support those in refuge.

Sanya Masood and Sophie Harrold, who both live in Stevenage and went to St Francis College in Letchworth, are collecting sanitary towels and tampons until March 27 for the Stevenage Women’s Refuge, which supports women and children fleeing domestic violence and abuse.

Last year, the pair collected sanitary products for women in need at a homeless shelter in Liverpool and for the Ashiana Network in London – a charity which specialises in helping black and minority ethnic women who are at risk of domestic or sexual violence.

But Sanya, of Turner Close, said: “Being born and bred in Stevenage, we’re really excited to be supporting an organisation so close to home that benefits local women.”

Refuge scheme manager Karen Underwood said: “The women face many issues, from dealing with their own situation and worrying about where they are going to live, to having to start anew. They may also have additional issues such as addictions or mental health problems, as well as being victims of abuse.


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“I believe Sanya and Sophie’s support will make a difference to women coming into refuge as they will not have a lot of money. It may also be a very good opportunity to discuss female sexual health.”

Sanya and Sophie acted after hearing about a campaign called The Homeless Period, which is asking people to sign a petition so the government gives homeless shelters an allowance to buy sanitary products. Sanya said: “Shelters have to rely on donations or use their scarce funding to provide basic dignity to the women who use their services.”

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Sanya added: “Shelters have to rely on donations or use their scarce funding in order to provide basic dignity to the women who use their services.”

To support Sanya and Sophie’s collection, until March 27, visit their Facebook page A Bloody Good Cause or email abloodygoodcause@hotmail.com.

To sign The Homeless Period petition, visit www.change.org and search for ‘The Homeless Period’.

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