A Final Message
"I started The Dot Org's blog in February 2020 after being inspired by our founders Gabby, Mal, & Nina and the mission their organization brought to Washtenaw County. This platform allowed me to explore menstruation through several lenses, deepening my understanding of the topic. I had not formally heard about period poverty prior to joining TDO, but this social justice and public health issue has since become a project that I am passionate about. TDO has afforded me the opportunity to know many amazing people, become a part of the change I wanted to see in my community, and learn about a prevalent disparity that affects millions of people every day. I am forever grateful to be a leader in this organization" -Kate (Director of Digital Content, blog writer)
"I joined The Dot Org as a freshman in 2018. Back then, the organization was one year old and still learning how to achieve their progressive ambitions. Almost immediately, I was chosen to join the outreach committee and get to work on my own independent project. New to both U-M and Ann Arbor, I threw myself into the city's activist space and dedicated my free time to changing how our community views periods and legislates period products. Four years later, The Dot Org is my most proudest accomplishment of my entire college career.
Despite countless unanswered phone calls and emails, battles with bureaucracy at the Provost office, and frustrating conversations with those disturbed by openly discussing periods, our team has achieved more than we ever could've imagined. We've provided over 600 period kits to local organizations in need and distributed almost 500 menstrual cups to U-M students. We've collaborated with Skyline High School's period club to donate products for their pilot program. Our latest project was with Ypsilanti Public Library, where we initiated a 6-month partnership to offer free period products in their bathrooms, as well as informative material on how to choose the right period product for your individual cycle. Finally, we worked tirelessly on the campaign to require free period products in all U-M bathrooms (women's and men's). And we were successful.
These past four years have shown me that hard work for your passion doesn't feel like work, but rather a mission you're dedicated to fulfill. I'm incredibly grateful to have learned this feeling at such a young age, especially for something that is helping people reclaim their body's right to dignity, autonomy, and hygiene. I can't even put into words how lucky I am to have walked in the Angell Hall classroom that October evening in 2018. The Dot Org feels like a piece of me that will never be separated, even when I move thousands of miles away from its home.
Thank you to the entire team for making this organization so successful and so special. Thank you to Maddie Cutler for allowing me to peacefully transition out of my passion project, knowing it'll be in great hands. And finally, thank you to every single person who has donated, supported, or simply observed The Dot Org and its endeavors. We couldn't have done it without you. With love," -Livvy Hintz (President)
"I was a student at Pioneer High School in Ann Arbor when one of my older sister’s best friends, Nina Serr, co-founded The Dot Org. Watching Nina and her co-founders have the opportunity to speak at the TEDxUofM conference, form meaningful connections with the community of people experiencing homelessness, and begin to break down the stigma around menstruation was beyond inspiring. When I got to UofM, I knew right off the bat that The Dot Org had the sort of mission and atmosphere that I was searching for to fortify my college experience. With such a tight knit community, it was easy to feel like I and my ideas were welcomed and accepted by the members of TDO, even before joining the executive board. Many meetings, while also including slides that gave insight into the issue and prevalence of period poverty, consisted of having open conversations about our experiences with menstruation, the stigma surrounding it, and how we could change the narrative. What I have loved (and bragged about) the most about TDO is that nearly every idea raised in meetings is brought to life, and we have been able to see the effects in real time. Between Ann Arbor Public Libraries offering free products, the homeless shelters we partner with being overwhelmed with product donations, the Ann Arbor city ordinance, and the University supplying free products in many bathrooms on campus, we have seen our hard work pay off. Although not all of these changes were a direct result of our work, it feels incredibly gratifying to have contributed to making a difference in the lives of students and community members. I am forever grateful for this group of dedicated students and our founders for creating an opportunity to find my place and to make a positive impact on the UofM and Ann Arbor communities that I adore so much." -Cammie (Director of Outreach)
"In the middle of the pandemic, like so many, I was floundering. However I was lucky enough to find The Dot Org through the President, Livvy Hintz. Immediately I recognized The Dot Org as a community with values and interests I held myself, which made work for the club and my college experience exponentially better. I’m so thankful to have been a member of such a great organization that not only talks about ways to make a difference in the world, but actually executes these plans. I am so proud to say I have contributed to this organization in any way and The Dot Org will always hold a special place in my college experience and life." -Abby (Outreach team)
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