The period experience can suck for teenage girls
To go against the messed up system they inherit takes a lot of energy and courage. Arguably periods are at their least positive, and in fact most negative, during your teenage years. It’s where confidence is lost, taboos take root, and unsustainable habits are formed.
It’s where we think we can make the biggest change. It’s not something we know how to do immediately, and it’s not something that will change overnight, but it is something we're to determined to change.
That’s why we’ve started laying the foundations for success, by empowering girls themselves to lead this challenge.
In 2021 we launched DAMEchangers, our new youth empowerment programme
After our co-founder Celia won the government’s Women in Innovation award, we were inspired to pay it forward and help support the next generation of female innovators, changemakers and troublemakers.
And so DAMEchangers was born. First, we ran an online challenge to find the best female innovators aged 16-17 across the UK. We set challenges to find exceptional Storytellers, Designers and Problem-solvers.
The prize? A week-long innovation camp where 20 of them would be put through their paces, learn new skills and be inspired by some of the UK’s best female entrepreneurs, leaders and creatives.
They lead, we follow.
The girls focused on solving problems close to DAME’s heart - sustainability, gender equality, period taboos and poverty, to name a few.
DAMEchangers has now become an annual event, which we hope to scale in size and impact. Think TED meets the Duke of Edinburgh Award for a new generation of change-makers.
The only period company with a Youth Board
To achieve our ambitious mission of making periods positive for people and the planet we needed to create an advisory board who could see what the future held, because they were going to shape it; a board who called bullshit on greenwashing because they had to live with the consequences; and a board passionate about creating a fairer society, because they know we can do better. It wasn’t easy, but we found them... and they’re all teenagers.
Each year, 6 girls from our DAMEchangers programme get the opportunity to join our Youth Board guiding key decision making within the company, contributing fresh ideas, and ensuring DAME is held accountable not just to today’s standards, but tomorrow’s too.
How much better would the teenage experience of periods be if girls were put in charge of decision making instead of middle-aged men who don’t menstruate?