Feminine hygiene products are the most requested items at local food banks, but the least donated.

Tampon Tuesday is aiming to change that, and a local company is donating its products and expertise to end what’s known as period poverty.

“If you’re not able to afford to buy food or needing to use the food bank services, chances are you may need support and help with accessing menstrual products as well,” explains Virginia Shay, communications coordinator at Kitchener-based Diva International Inc.

It was this need that led staff at CTV London to create a business-networking event called Tampon Tuesday a decade ago. Admission to the event cost a box of tampons, which were then donated to the food bank.

“Tampon Tuesday is so great because it’s bringing awareness to issues like period poverty and menstrual equity,” says CEO Carinne Chambers-Saini.

Supporting women who can’t afford these products is now part of Diva International’s business model.

The Kitchener-based company, which makes reusable silicone menstrual cups, says that, because its products are reusable, it’s more affordable for people who can’t buy tampons or pads every month.

“Last year we donated about 15,000 of those cups worldwide to different organizations,” explains vice president of operations Roxanne Law, “and over the next year we plan on donating the same amount.”

Waterloo Region’s Tampon Tuesday was held at the EVO Kitchen in Cambridge on June 11.