An eight grade teacher from Austin, Texas is overwhelmed by the generosity of her neighbors this week after receiving “well over 300 boxes” of menstrual pads and liners for students who don’t have access to them.
Kylie DeFrance, a teacher at Austin Achieve Public Schools says she “cried many, many tears of joy” as hundreds of boxes arrived on her front porch from members of her community.
Austin Achieve Public School is a Title I charter school, which means nearly all of her students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. In an effort to help students with limited access, DeFrance has spent her career committed to making free period products available to students who may struggle to access them.
“A lot of these kids don’t have the luxury of getting to have all the things that they need,” she said.
“Since day one of teaching, I have always kept pad bags in my classroom for my female scholars,” she said. “I noticed that I was spending a little bit more each month, and more and more and more, and I was like, ‘You know what? I’m just going to make an Amazon wish list. I’m going to put six boxes of pads on there.’”
This makes it so that others are able to purchase anything on her Amazon wish list as a donation to her classroom. DeFrance says she regularly spends between $100-$200 of her own money each month on menstrual products for her students.
The eight grade teacher posted the wish list on her neighborhood Nextdoor page.
“Honestly, maybe I thought two boxes would come,” she said. “It was an overwhelming amount of support.”
In response to the post, DeFrance received hundreds of boxes of pads and tampons delivered to her front door.
“My house looks like an Amazon warehouse package store, like it’s insane,” she said.
As a result of the community’s generosity, DeFrance says she’s been able to create period goody bags for students to take home with them, and also share the resources with other teachers.