The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Menstrual Equity Project faces funding difficulties

Photo by Erin Rapuano for The Lafayette
L-RAJE was formed in 2021 with a plan to provide free menstrual products in all college buildings by this academic year.

Lafayette for Reproductive Autonomy, Justice and Empowerment — the campus organization for sexual and menstrual health known as L-RAJE — has struggled with uncertainty about funding for its Menstrual Equity Project.

Despite the college administration committing to funding the project in September, which saw 35 wall-mounted tampon and pad dispensers installed in campus bathrooms, it will no longer be providing funds for the restocking of the machines’ menstrual products.

L-RAJE executive board members met with Sarah Moschenross, the vice president of student life, and Nicole Eramo, the chief of staff, last Wednesday to discuss the restocking of the machines.

Rebekah Lazar ‘26, the group’s vice president of programming, and Sophie Himmel ‘24, its president, attended the meeting, at which they were offered $2,000 in the form of a gift fund.

“The [administration] agreed that it’s going to take at least $8,000, but more likely $10,000 to make this project operational,” Lazar said.

According to Himmel, the gift fund is from the college’s endowment. The administration will not allocate more money to L-RAJE after the transfer to the organization, which occurred on Wednesday evening, according to an email from Himmel.

“This funding needs to be operationalized because gift funds don’t last … [administration] can ‘cobble something together,’ but they can’t tell us when this is going to happen,” Lazar said. “They said, ‘We don’t know what to tell you.’”

Moschenross and Eramo declined to comment.

Himmel said that scheduling a meeting with the administration for the matter was also difficult.

“[The administration] sent me on what is essentially a wild goose chase,” Himmel said. “I’m talking to the Office of Development, but development won’t work on student projects … so why is Vice President [Moschenross] sending me to development? They’re sending me everywhere.”

She added that she had been emailing the administration about the meeting since November.

“From November until last week, I was asking for meetings,” Himmel said. “I was emailing once a week, twice a week even.”

L-RAJE has plans to further bring attention to the Menstrual Equity Program in hopes that the administration will fund the program indefinitely. Among these is a return of Student Government involvement in the program.

“The Student Government has brought back the Menstrual Equity Project and we have started meetings,” said Yuko Tanaka ’26, the Student Government vice president. “We are hoping to work with L-RAJE, other organizations on campus and administration to keep the project going, expand on it and secure funding.”

The organization also plans to host an advocacy week this March organized by Piper Chimento ‘26, the vice president of advocacy. This will include seven days of L-RAJE presentations and events for students to engage in.

“On our final day, depending upon what we receive from administration and if we hear any feedback from them throughout the week, we will host another gathering,” Chimento explained. “Hopefully a larger gathering [of students] to show that there are a lot of people who care about this and that it is very important to students.”

Leave a Comment

Comments (0)

If you wish for your response to an article to be submitted as a letter to the editor, please email [email protected].
All Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *