February 15, 2017
Fourth year student Katiana Garagozlo hosted a #HappyPeriod packaging event at the Center for Haitian Studies in Miami, FL over the weekend. She and other clinical students from AUC collected and assembled 225 care kits full of menstrual hygiene products. On Saturday, February 18, they will distribute these kits to homeless women and shelters around the Miami area, including Lotus House, Miami Rescue Mission, and Camillus House.
Katiana is the second AUC student to spearhead the #HappyPeriod social movement in Miami. Earlier this year, 4th year student Nicole Czapp began a Miami chapter after learning about the volunteer initiative, whose mission is to support anyone that is homeless, low-income, and/or living in poverty and includes LGBT,non-binary, teens, veterans, and the diabled.
Related: Helping Homeless Women Have a #HappyPeriod
When asked why she continues to hold these feminine hygiene drives, Katiana cited a recent study conducted at Florida International University: Around 25% of women in Miami-Dade County are currently living below the poverty level. And the Institute for Women Policy Research found that women in Florida have lower access to health insurance coverage when compared to the national average. As future physicians, these statistics emphasize the importance of patient advocacy and community outreach, two things Katiana strongly believes in.
"To participate in #HappyPeriod is to give a voice to the disadvantaged patient population that AUC students in Miami have the privilege of serving," she said. "It is a unique opportunity to further understand patients, which in turn creates more empathetic physicians, regardless of specialty."
Interested in volunteering with #HappyPeriod in Miami? Email Katiana at email@example.com.