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Here's how three Sheboygan high school seniors are helping to make a change for local women in poverty – Sheboygan Press

SHEBOYGAN – Three local high school students have teamed up with a Chicago-based charity to ensure women in poverty have access to feminine hygiene products. 
Sheboygan South High School students Isabella Dexter, Elli Renzelmann and Ella Smith needed community service hours to meet the requirements for the National Honor Society, and Smith came up with the idea to apply for the Her Drive program after seeing a video the organization made on TikTok.
“I was honestly just so inspired by all of the work Her Drive had done so far and I thought it was an awesome mission,” Smith said. 
Since they began collecting donations on Aug. 13, the girls have reached 20,000 feminine products and over 600 hygiene products and they are still counting, according to Dexter. They are also taking contactless donations through an Amazon wish list
Her Drive is a charitable organization founded in June 2020 by three university students to help women of all ages who can’t access or afford feminine hygiene products. 
“These items are crucial to people’s well-being and are sometimes overlooked,” Smith said. “They are also very expensive.”
According to the Her Drive website, its volunteers have donated to homeless shelters, women and children’s shelters, domestic violence survivor support organizations, LGBTQ+ community centers, reservation communities, Black-led organizations and refugee support programs across America.
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In October 2020, the organization launched the Host Your Own Drive program, which allowed others throughout the country to collect their own donations to disperse locally. 
“When you donate, you don’t really think of donating these types of items, usually it’s canned foods and things like that. It’s a really big issue,” Dexter said. “(Her Drive) works to fight against that.” 
The girls applied in April and were approved to host their own monthlong drive in August. 
The three seniors set up donation boxes that are checked weekly in locations all around the city such as Goodside Grocery, Paradigm, South High, Entourage Salon & Spa and Bold Cycle in Kohler. 
“The feedback each place has given has been wonderful,” Smith said. “They all tell us how excited they are to be a part of it. It feel awesome to know we are making a difference.” 
Acceptable items to donate include new and gently used bras and bralettes, sports bras, menstrual pads/tampons/pantiliners (acceptable as long as individually wrapped), hair and body hygiene products, hair color/hairspray/styling products, deodorant and lotion. A full list of acceptable donations can be found on the Her Drive website
The donations collected will go to Deland’s Receiving Home at 824 Kentucky Ave. and Horizons4Girls at 310 Bluff Ave., though with the number of donations received, the girls are looking for more places to disperse them to. 
“We’ve had a really big turnout, we weren’t expecting so much,” Dexter said.
Deland’s Receiving Home provides temporary emergency shelter for girls ages 3 to 17. Horizons4Girls is a local mentoring program that provides young girls with services such as study skills, goal-setting and problem-solving, anger management, alcohol and drug awareness, and life and job skills.
“Making a real impact always felt impossible and out of reach to me, and this drive taught me that it isn’t,” Smith said. “Every hour I have worked on this has felt so worth it.”
The monthlong drive will last until Sunday. 
For more information on Her Drive, visit www.herdrive.org. To purchase and make contactless donations, click here.
Reach Jelissa Burns at 920-226-4241 or [email protected] Follow her on Twitter at @burns_jelissa or on Instagram at burns_jelissa.

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