Menstruation Station

Estimated Amount to be requested from the CSF: $3,000

Letter of Intent:

Letter of Intent:

The University of Washington Q Center is requesting an additional $3,000 from the Campus Sustainability Fund Mini-Grant to purchase and distribute sustainable, eco-friendly menstrual products to 100 UW students in need. The products—reusable cotton panty liners, reusable cotton pads, and menstrual cups—will be purchased from GladRags as part of the Q Center’s continuing initiative called the Menstruation Station, whose launch was generously funded by CFS. The Menstruation Station program, led by Graduate Program Coordinator Joie Waxler, has been successfully advancing menstrual justice for over a year by providing wraparound services that center the experiences, needs, and desires of bodies that bleed. The Q Center’s Menstruation Station program aims to undo and mitigate the structures of oppression that impact menstruating bodies with a focus on the needs of queer and trans folks who are often left out of menstruation discourse and care. Our goal is to re-empower bleeding and alleviate the financial and emotional burdens experienced by people who menstruate. The funding we received to from CFS to launch this initiative, as well as the support we received from the UW DEI Blueprint to maintain this program as allowed us to meet this community need and fulfill many of our programmatic goals. As we have this program grow and flourish thanks to the generosity of grant programs like CFS, we have also seen a steady increase in engagement and need. We are requesting these funds in order to keep up with student need, and ensure that all bodies that bleed are able to access the care they need through sustainable methods and community care.

Menstruation is a nearly ubiquitous experience for people who have uteruses, but it is often not discussed or tended to in the ways people with uteruses may need in order to thrive alongside this bodily process. Everybody experiences the menstrual cycle differently, but menstruation and ovulation can often be painful, fatiguing, emotional, and expensive. Over the course of their life, a person who menstruates will have around 456 periods and will spend upwards of $18,000 on menstrual care. And the issue is not just financial, it is also deeply environmental. Each year, menstrual products account for 200,000 tons of plastic, and most menstruators will generate anywhere from 250-300 pounds of plastic waste over the course of their lifetimes. As we continue moving through the social and physical consequences of Covid-19, the stigmatizing ramifications of the current outbreak of Monkeypox (MPV), and the historical and present the burdens of White Supremacy, colonialism, and hetero-patriarchy, queer and trans menstruating bodies continue to be disproportionately impacted. Menstrual wellbeing remains under-funded and menstrual stigma continues to create hostile environments for bodies that bleed. Providing free and environmentally-conscientious menstrual products to menstruators is an important step towards eradicating the economic and environmental burdens of menstrual care.

The Q Center has continued fostering our partnerships with GalPalz, Hall Health, the Counseling Center, the D Center, and the UW Food Pantry. Our partnerships ensure that our menstrual health initiatives reach a diverse swath of the UW community, and that our programming compliments already existing resources, such as UW Food Pantry’s disposable menstrual product distribution services. Our partnerships have also allowed us to collaboratively build out our supportive programming; we are continuing to work with Hall Health and the D Center on our Reproductive Justice Programming, launched last year with our ‘Abortion Care for Queer and Trans Bodies’ workshop. These partnerships are vital to the wellbeing of our programming, and more importantly, to the wellbeing of our community. Our collaborations through the Menstruation Station have helped nurture a supportive network for the community we serve, and we are looking forward to advancing sustainable menstrual equity through these community oriented collaborations.

Joie Waxler has been overseeing the creation, implementation, and maintenance of the Menstruation Station program since 2021. They are a professional sexual health educator, and have been published on both national and local stages on the topic of building effective means to provide affirming and accessible health care to queer and trans individuals and communities. They successfully built the first menstrual equity and access program for the Ryan Health Network, a major Federally Qualified Health Center in New York City, as well as one of the first pregnancy and parenting programs that centers queer and trans homeless youth in NYC. Their experience building sexual health equity programs that center the experiences, identities, and voices of communities that are often overlooked in this field are continuing to flourish as a Graduate Program Coordinator at the Q Center.

The Menstruation Station initiative is in part inspired by, and deeply aligned with the Q Center’s mission to engender a brave, affirming, liberatory, and celebratory environment for UW community members of all sexual and gender orientations, identities, and expressions. We approach our work with intentional interpersonal processes that strive to create holistic, culturally embedded, and appropriate services. Menstrual health and equity is imperative to maintaining emotional and physical wellbeing, and the funds from this CFS Mini-Grant will help the Q Center continue to engender equitable, sustainable, menstrual wellbeing for all bodies that bleed. Thank you for your consideration, and for the sustainable community you are helping to build with this funding. Please reach out to Joie Waxler at or budget administrator Lindsey Mitchell at with any questions regarding this application.

Joie Waxler
Graduate Program Coordinator
Q Center, University of Washington
They, them, theirs

Budget Proposal and Timeline

Amount Requested: $3000
Q Center Contribution: $1500

Description: Our partnership with GladRags allows us to purchase reusable menstrual products at wholesale prices. We are currently providing each participant with either one menstrual cup and one reusable menstrual pad, or three reusable menstrual pads of any variety. The maximum amount per student we are currently allocating for each student is $40.00 in products, not including shipping and tax costs. The aggregate average cost per student we have provided menstrual products for thus far is $35.00 including tax and shipping. The minimum possible cost per student is $6.25. Based on the aggregate average of costs over this past year, we estimate we will be able to provide about 125 UW community members with menstrual products with the funds from this grant and the additional funds from our discretionary budget.

We are currently working from a separate grant which we anticipate will finish in December 2022. With a projected 35% increase in engagement, we anticipate these funds will allow the Menstruation Station to serve the UW community from January 2023-July 2023.

Primary Contact First & Last Name: Joie Waxler