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Dignity Grows to Hold Summer Packing Event in West Hartford

Campers at Hartford's Camp Courant display Dignity Grows Totes filled with hygiene supplies. Camp Courant is one of 29 local partners who distribute the totes to our local neighbors in need. Photo courtesy of Dignity Grows.

Volunteers are needed to pack hygiene totes for local neighbors in need on July 24 in West Hartford.

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Dignity Grows, a national movement with local roots, and the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford will hold a community packing event on Sunday, July 24, to assemble comprehensive hygiene totes for local neighbors in need. The event will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Hartford, 26 Buena Vista Road, West Hartford.

Nearly one in four menstruators in the U.S. lacks access to affordable disposable menstrual products, which are not covered by government-funded programs. This often results in school absences, missed work, and social insecurity.

“The impact of period poverty goes far beyond the need for physical hygiene supplies,” noted Jennifer Schwartzman, chief operating officer of Dignity Grows. “It affects self-confidence, mental health, and the ability to stay connected to one’s community.”

Dignity Grows is the only national provider of free comprehensive hygiene essentials paired with period products and distributed in a discreet fashion. Headed by CEO and Founder Jessica Zachs, it began as a local collaboration with the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford in 2019. Since its inception, the Greater Hartford chapter has distributedmore than 40,000 Dignity Grows Totes through 29 nonprofit partners including town services departments, health centers, food pantries, public school systems, at-risk youth organizations, and more. Each discreet, zipper-top tote contains sanitary pads and panty liners, shampoo, soap, a toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant, and hand-wipes.

“Dignity Grows provides vital resources to our neighbors in need both locally and across the country,” said David Waren, president and CEO of Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford. “It’s a deeply meaningful expression of one of our core values at Federation: tikkun olam, or repairing the world,” he added.

Everyone is welcome to participate in the July 24 packing event. Prior registration is required by July 20; a suggested donation of $20 covers the cost of two Dignity Grows Totes. For more information or to RSVP, email [email protected].

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