Ipswich woman's best-selling knickers inspire period project

Maria Igwebuike, owner of Maria Callisto in her home studio.

Maria Igwebuike, owner of lingerie business, Maria Callisto, has set up the Trinity Project to raise awareness of issues surrounding menstruation - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

An Ipswich business owner is in need of £4,000 to run a pilot project which aims to educate vulnerable women about issues surrounding menstruation.  

Maria Igwebuike, owner of Maria Callisto –  a sustainable lingerie business – has set up the Trinity Project in the hope of raising awareness of period poverty and breaking down stigmas attached to women and their periods.  

The 25-year-old explained that the project first came about because she wanted to create comfortable, but stylish period underwear for women. 

“I wanted to create underwear that is cute and I’d be proud to wear. I find that every time I’m on my period I’m wearing the worst underwear which is not in the best condition – it’s faded and ugly,” she said. 

Brightly coloured period underwear designed by Maria Igwebuike

Maria's best-selling period underwear, the 'Trinity Knicker', inspired the project - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

After turning to social media, her creation “exploded” and she received an “overwhelming” number of responses from women who told her about the shame they felt surrounded periods. 

“It made me think about menstruation in a different light. To begin with I never thought it was an issue. It’s ladylike to not talk about it. It’s been a learning process for me, and I learnt about period poverty – something I was never aware of," she added.

Currently, the project has raised £440 of its target and aims to facilitate workshops for vulnerable women to learn about period poverty and teach them the science behind menstruation. Maria also aims to send one hundred care packages to women in refugee camps. 

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“The money will be used to run the workshops in Suffolk. I am also trying to get other specialists involved, either a physician or a gynaecologist, to speak about the more scientific reasons things happen.” Maria said. 

Maria, 25, standing outside her home studio in Ipswich

The 25-year-old wants to hold workshops for vulnerable women and send one hundred care packages to women in refugee camps - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

Other portions of the money will be used to buy an industrial machine to make more period underwear, and buy products to make up care packages to be sent off to refugee camps in Greece, Lebanon and parts of Africa.  

“You can help by donating to the crowd funding page or by creating a care package. If you can donate period products or whatever you think another woman would benefit from, I’m happy to take that.” Maria added.  

The crowdfunding page has until August 12 to raise money. If you would like to donate or for more information see here