As we have kicked off our fifteenth year of breaking bloody taboos, we would like to take some time to show our appreciation for those who are working hard to create change in the world.
Every month, we want to show our appreciation for people or organizations that are creating conversation and shining bright lights on ways we can all make the world better.
So let’s get this period party started!
*drum roll, please*
Our April Bloody Awesome Award goes to Put A Cup In It, also known as PACII. PACII has done exceptional work in creating an open and welcoming community around menstrual cups and periods. They have been sharing menstrual cup love already for 5 years now and that is something to be proud of!
Let’s hear from Kim and Amanda, the founders of Put A Cup In It:
What is PACII and how did it start?
Put A Cup In it was started in 2015 based on the concept of advocating for reusable menstrual products. At the time, the idea was based on Kim seeing a sign in a public toilet about not flushing tampons and loved the idea of putting stickers on those to spread the word. The phrase was one Kim used at workshops and on her blog, and it felt like the perfect name for a new website all about menstrual cups. Amanda was asked to join and we got to work. The website evolved from there to offer more resources like our popular menstrual cup quiz and helpful video guides.
Why menstrual cups?
Both of us were users of cups and we each had our own websites where we were creating content about them. Kim was already speaking and hosting workshops about menstrual cups. Combining skills to make a new central website about cups felt like a good idea at the time.
What do you think is the most rewarding in what you do?
The community that has grown around Put A Cup In It is the most rewarding part of running the website. If it weren't for the community that has developed I'm not sure we would have the success and growth we have now. We get emails and messages every day thanking us for the videos and resources and saying how much using a cup, and finding Put A Cup In It, has changed their lives. That never gets old. PACII is so much more than a quiz or website and it's incredible to be part of something that has had such a significant personal impact on people's quality of life.
Why do you think talking about periods and menstrual cups is so important?
Having used cups for almost a decade, it's amazing to see the way attitudes towards periods (and cups) have evolved. Anyone can discuss periods with anyone. This also makes the cup movement more successful- if we can talk about our periods and our bodies we can engage with them more, which is what using a cup means. Cups have so many benefits both for the user, and for the the environment. It's important to PACII to keep pushing that forward.
You also have your birthday! Already 5 years sharing cup love, congratulations! From our point of view the attitudes about periods have changed quite a lot already during 5 years! Have you seen any changes in the period world?
Thank you, 5 years is exciting! The biggest change is how inclusive the period world has become, evolving into a much safer place for everyone who bleeds. The branding for products, the literature for instructions, the imagery and photography, and even the designs themselves are, in many cases, inclusive. That wasn't the case 5 years ago. It's not universal but the progress is being made and I expect the momentum and education will continue.
What is your vision and how do you wish the "period world" will look like in 10 years when you turn 15?
A comprehensive period education effort that leaves no child confused about their reproductive and period health is what we hope we see in another 10 years. PACII gets a lot of requests for help, well beyond just how to use a cup, and the lack of body literacy even in adults is shocking. We have a lot of hope this will happen, especially now that the taboo around periods is dissolving. Having menstrual cups and reusable pads/underwear included in the period education through schools would be an incredible part of that effort. The UK already has cups in their education and even provides them to students, now the US needs to catch up.
Put a Cup In It is the most comprehensive source for all the questions that will arise for new or experienced cup users. They make it seem like having a cup is fun and it is fun! And they don’t make anything sound awkward and honestly, that vibrates to the viewers to stop being embarrassed about your periods. Embrace it! Look forward to it! And Enjoy it!