Days for Girls Club Welcomes Founder Celeste Mergens

FEBRUARY 2, 2024

While investigating period poverty for a history paper, senior Abby S. ’24 was shocked to learn that, globally, one in five women misses school or work because of inadequate menstrual products. Soonafter, Abby co-founded Nightingale’s Days for Girls student club with Gabbi S. '24.

“Globally, the DfG non-profit has partnered with developing communities and distributed three million inconspicuous, washable menstruation kits in 145 countries. I am honored they were willing to work with me and Nightingale.”

In December, a few dozen Upper School students gathered in the commons to pack DfG kits, complete with hygienic products such as a reusable shied, reusable liners, disposable pads, a washcloth, a bar of soap, a DfG period education/care and use sheet, wipes, a carrying pouch and washing bag, and a drawstring bag. Together, the group created 40 kits and to date have even already surpassed their goal for the year of assembling over 2500 menstrual products.

Nightingale welcomed Days for Girls Founder Celeste Mergens to their Health & Wellness Day in January to learn about her background and what inspired her to found the organization. Later that day, Upper Schoolders gathered in the library for a special Days for Girls workshop, led by Abby S.

“I was inspired to incorporate Days for Girls into Health and Wellness Day programming because menstruation is a remarkably important aspect of Nightingale student health. Unfortunately, it is not considered as important in other parts of the world. To combat period poverty and shatter stigmas in broader society, we have to start close to home. I am so happy so many students were willing to attend my workshops and learn more about Days for Girls. The more Nightingale knows the more the world knows,” she explained.

She continued: “If there is one thing for attendees to take away from our Health and Wellness Day programming, it is that without periods, there wouldn't be people. Menstruation is something to be respected, honored, and celebrated. I believe Nightingale does this terrifically. At Days for Girls, we’re promoting it in other communities, too.”