Share the Dignity campaign helps homeless women in Canberra
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Share the Dignity campaign helps homeless women in Canberra

It's not often a burly, heavily-tattooed man will carry a full bag of tampons and pads down the street in Braddon.

That's just one of the stories from the ladies at Moxom and Whitney florist, who have volunteered as a collection point for the Share the Dignity campaign.

Moxom and Whitney florist on Lonsdale Street, Braddon. Co- owner, Belinda Whitney with a donation basket full of women's sanitary products, donated by customers for the Share the Dignity campaign.

Moxom and Whitney florist on Lonsdale Street, Braddon. Co- owner, Belinda Whitney with a donation basket full of women's sanitary products, donated by customers for the Share the Dignity campaign.Credit:Graham Tidy

As part of the national initiative, Canberrans are urged to donate sanitary products for women less fortunate.

The staff at Moxom and Whitney set up a donation basket to collect items from the public, along with other local businesses including the Canberra Handmade shop in the city, Authentix beauty salon in Dickson and Fernwood gym in Tuggeranong.

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The Share the Dignity campaign has been running for just over two weeks and florist co-owner Belinda Whitney said they've had their collection point up and running for little more than a week.

"We've already handed over four huge garbage bags full of products to the organisers," she said.

"Coming from a health background, I can understand the importance of hygiene, and not just that but the dignity side of things as well."

Ms Whitney said the plight of homeless women and women in refuges who could not afford pads and tampons was devastating.

She said to be able to help out in a small way by serving as a collection point for products was rewarding.

"I can't even imagine what it would be like to be homeless and have to go through that … you wouldn't even have access to that emergency wad of toilet paper if you get stuck somewhere," Ms Whitney said.

"I don't know how they do it."

She said donating was easy so the public reaction was overwhelming.

"People have blown us away with their generosity," she said.

"We had a dude come in with a massive bag full. When he left, all the staff just looked at each other.

"He was quite a tough looking dude but we've had all sorts of people come in and drop them off; mostly women but it was pretty impressive to see that."

The Share the Dignity campaign in Canberra has been extended by a month so feminine hygiene products will be collected up until August 31.

The items will be donated to Karinya House, Beryl Women's Refuge, Louisa's Domestic Violence Service and Inanna Inc. for women in need.

Kimberley Le Lievre is the Editor of The Sunday Canberra Times

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