WIT Founders & Miss Universe Speak at Global Citizen Festival
Launches the Global Menstrual Equity Accelerator
Breanna and Brooke Bennett, the 15-year-old co-founders of Women in Training, Inc., were special guests of Always, the world’s leader in menstrual protection by Procter & Gamble, at the Global Citizen Festival in New York on September 24, 2022. The Always “Period Heroes” spoke on stage at the festival alongside Miss Universe Harnazz Sandhu about period poverty and how it impacts girls and women around the world. In front of an in-person audience of 60,000 people in Central Park and five million digital viewers, Ms. Sandhu announced the launch of the Global Menstrual Equity Accelerator. Period poverty can have serious consequences on health and mental well-being, but with the launch of The Global Menstrual Equity Accelerator, this may be changing.
“One in five American girls miss school or cannot participate in activities due to a lack of access to period products,” said Brooke. “More than 500 million people experience period poverty around the world.”
The new Period for Change initiative is aimed at fighting the stigma associated with periods and the negative impact of period poverty. The Accelerator will also work to influence policy, and secure the urgent resources needed to fight period poverty and provide education about periods worldwide.
“We started Women in Training, Inc. in our hometown of Montgomery, Alabama, to help girls here climb out of the cycle of generational poverty – including period poverty,” Breanna said. “We’ve always intended to expand our mission globally to help End Poverty. PERIOD! … and now is the time!”
At the festival, the twins walked the red carpet, donned in jackets donated by American Eagle to event speakers, and chatted with one of their sheroes, journalist Katie Couric.
“Ms. Couric was so sweet and genuine!” Brooke exclaimed. “Her production company produced a video about our work, but this was our first time meeting her in person.”
After their big moment on stage, Breanna and Brooke mingled with their new friend, Miss Universe Harnazz Sandhu, and enjoyed live performances by some of their favorite entertainers, including Charlie Puth, the Jonas Brothers, Mariah Carey, and ballerina Misty Copeland.
“Charlie [Puth] is my bae!” Breanna smiled widely. “Nick [Jonas] gave us a big hug. His gorgeous wife, actress Priyanka Chopra, was also super sweet and welcoming to us, as well!”
Both girls were also excited to meet and chat with actress Sofia Carson of “Descendants.”
According to the 2022 Global Citizen website, the Festival saw more than $800 million announced to end extreme poverty NOW and $1.6 billion announced by the European Commission and Canada as part of the seventh replenishment of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria in addition to the announcement of five companies signing on to the UN-led Race to Zero initiative to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Of this funding, more than $440 million was earmarked exclusively to initiatives to end extreme poverty on the African continent, with the remainder intended to reach people around the world, including across Africa.
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