Social enterprise Lilypads wins place at Pitch@Palace final

Lilypads founder Alison Wood said reaching the final of the Pitch@Palace competition gave her 'confidence that we can truly have an impact on period poverty'. Picture: Contributed
Lilypads founder Alison Wood said reaching the final of the Pitch@Palace competition gave her 'confidence that we can truly have an impact on period poverty'. Picture: Contributed
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Social enterprise Lilypads, inventor of an eco-friendly, reusable sanitary towel, will pitch at Buckingham Palace after reaching the final of the Pitch@Palace 10.0 entrepreneurs competition.

Founded as a student project by 22-year-old Alison Wood at the University of Edinburgh, Lilypads also runs a health education course for girls and women in Scotland and Kenya.

To date, Lilypads has trained 32 women in three regions in Kenya to sell their products, as well as providing health education.

Its UK products are manufactured in Glasgow, with sales profits redirected to Kenya to subsidise the manufacture and supply of pads in the local market.

Wood said: “To make it through to the final 12 really is an outstanding opportunity for us at such an early stage in our journey and gives us confidence that we can truly have an impact on period poverty.

“Having experienced the difficulties that schoolgirls in Kenya face in accessing sanitary products, we began research in our hometown, Edinburgh. We realised that period poverty and stigma are equally prevalent here in Scotland where one in ten women cannot afford sanitary protection.

“The reusable nature of our product ensures it has a lower cost over the long run in comparison to disposables. We also use high quality, environmentally friendly materials to ensure the products are long-lasting and hygienic.

“Our health education programmes provide long-term tangible benefits and empower girls to no longer feel endangered, isolated or disadvantaged as a result of their periods.”