SILENT HEROES: Give the gift of dignity this Christmas
GRANDMOTHERS who can't afford incontinence pads because their grandkids need lunch.
That is the heartbreaking reality tutor Julie Unwin comes face-to-face with on a too-regular basis.
Mrs Unwin started the It's In The Bag campaign last year after she realised her students were missing out on school because they couldn't afford basic sanitary items.
"So many girls don't want to admit they need these things but the longer I go on, the more I realise how many women and girls go without," she said.
As part of the project, community members were encouraged to fill a handbag with hygiene essentials such as tampons, shampoo and deodorant but people could also include extra gifts, like nail polish or jewellery.
In time for Christmas, Mrs Unwin said the bags may be the closest some got to a present this year.
"A lot of women put money towards food going on table, bills being paid, and fuel in car. Most woman won't put their hand up for help," she said.
"This way they get something special for them."
Spurred by the response of those in need, Mrs Unwin wanted to keep fighting until every Southern Downs woman had the dignity they deserved.
"Handing over bags to a mum and her teen girls, it brings me to tears," she said.
"Those are the silent heroes that I keep battling for."
The charity drive runs until December 7, and bags can be donated at Bunnings Warehouse.
For more information, head to sharethedignity.com.au or contact Mrs Unwin on firstname.lastname@example.org.