The Devon students taking a stand against period poverty - and helping girls in Kenya

  • Watch Jacquie Bird's report

Students at a Devon school are making tackling period poverty their mission after partnering with a school in Kenya.

Students in Tiverton have made an alliance with partner schools in Kenya, visiting them before lockdown and taking with them suitcases full of sanitary product.

The project was sparked when students discovered some girls in Kenya were missing as much as 20 per cent of their time in school because they did not have access to period products.

Tiverton High School student Ellen Clarke said: “Honestly, their faces were amazing, they loved it all and honestly, I would take anything to experience that again.”

The twinning between Tiverton High School and the schools in Kenya came about because of teacher Anthony NDeritu, who was born and brought up in Kenya but now teaches at Tiverton.

He said it was all about building a global village, telling ITV News West Country: “You should be there when the girls are handing them out. I don’t, they tell me, can you take a walk and I say, yes. And they do it themselves. And it’s fabulous.”

The girls have now created a campaign not only to raise awareness and funds to take more sanitary products out to Kenya, but also to make people realise period poverty is not just something that happens elsewhere.

Free sanitary products at Tiverton High School

They have won grants from the Department for Education to buy sanitary products for free use within their school and have created a video endorsing the message that they stand against period poverty.

One of the campaigners, student Bryony Keane, said: “We identified period poverty as an issue within our community and I think there’s a real stigma around periods and I think it’s so important to break that down.

"We wouldn’t want any of our students not to be able to come to our school because of their periods.”