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Project to help homeless women’s health starts in the Ozarks

(KY3)
Published: Jun. 30, 2019 at 8:56 PM CDT
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There is a new project aimed at helping homeless women in the Ozarks.

Sydni Samsoe is a nurse and a mother living in the Ozarks.

She says while being at work she sees multiple women who don't have access to menstrual supplies.

"They'll ask for it at their doctor appointments or let us know that they don't have anything at home for their next cycle or their current cycle," said Samsoe.

She says women will use other means to help themselves, which can lead to skin irritations or odors.

"They use napkins, paper-towels, toilet paper, other articles of clothing, just anything they can use to absorb the blood," said Samsoe.

"I feel terrible, I mean I am able to go and purchase my products with no problem, never thought about it, or questioned it. I wouldn't know what to do if i had to go to work and I didn't have something, I just want to be able to give back," said Samsoe.

The Homeless Period Project started four years ago in South Carolina. Their mission is to provide menstrual hygiene products to the homeless women who cannot afford to buy the supplies, and teens who can't access it at school or home.

Sarah Dobard, one of the founders for the Springfield location, says they are hoping to help several hundred women.

Dobard along with Samsoe say that without these necessary products, women can run the risk of developing toxic shock syndrome. According to Mayo Clinic toxic shock syndrome can be life threatening.

"They tend to have flu like symptoms, fever nausea, vomiting, those kinds of symptoms," said Samsoe.

"The way we try to prevent this from happening is to have them change their tampons regularly, like every couple of hours," said Samsoe.

Samsoe says this can be hard when a woman only has one tampon to last them the entire day. She just wants women to know there is no shame in asking for supplies.

"There are other people out there that will help if you just ask and they will steer you in the right direction," said Samsoe.

If you would like to help you can go to this website, https://www.homelessperiodproject.org/donate