We connect people to their bodies and the land,
creating healthy systems for us all to thrive in.
Because when we are disconnected, things like this happen...
Our story starts with Olie, who at 19 moved from New Zealand to Northern India. It was her, her toothbrush and a bunch of reusable Days For Girls cloth pad kits. A systems thinker from early on, she went with the mission of helping to solve problems, rather than creating more while doing so.
Linking up with the local nurse, Knishu, together they provided menstrual education and delivered the bright reusable menstrual kits to the local school girls. Girls who had tears in their eyes when they realised that this would mean for them.
Watch Olie's TEDx Talk to hear the full story
At 22, back in Aotearoa New Zealand, Olie began to question the system here. In November 2016, through conducting the first research of its type in NZ, she found out both Papatūānuku and our people were struggling to afford the cost of how we manage menstruation.
Of 1000 menstruating students we found:
🍒 30% had skipped class because of a lack of access to menstrual products
🍒 Kiwis use enough disposable menstrual products each year to wrap the circumference of the globe.
🍒 50% of ovulators are still too embarrassed to talk about periods openly
Wā Collective started as a shoebox on the wall of Massey University where people could put tampons and pads in, and other people could take them out.
Upon deciding this approach was an ambulance at the bottom of the cliff, and only helping on the surface, Wā Collective shifted to become a system that was designed to free people from it, instead of keep them in it. Smart. That's when we started to grow.
With flowing joy we launched our full business and impact model on International Women's Day 2018.
Every premium quality Wā menstrual cup sold subsidises Wā Cups for students in need,
keeping our next generation in class and stopping period poverty from adversely affecting education in Aotearoa.
We co-create solutions with organisations who work with people in need. We listen, chat, then work out the best way to give this hand up, rather than a hand out.
We partner with students’ associations to flow subsidised Wā Cups and period puns to students, right on campus or site.
This also engages the whole insititutional community in the conversation, and brings them into a national conversation.
We also partner with Women's Health Collectives to get free cups to those in need and co-facilitate school programmes.
Wā Cups are different to the rest. We wanted to help our people and planet right through our production line, rather than help at home and turn a blinder on potential damage to people and environments along the way.
So, Wā cups are ethically crafted, zero waste produced with full material traecibility by our manufacturing partners in the USA. Nowhere else could match this.
All our beautiful packaging is NZ sourced and designed, reusable and compostable. Even our postage bags are plastic free and reusable!
We talk about menstruation with a flood of vigour! By doing this, we are breaking down the bloody taboo. No more womb for it. It's hurt us, shut us down and disconnected us from our own bodies for far too long.
Stand in your power. Own your ovaries... empathise with your friends' pair.
Change comes with permission, through language. Be that change and chat about periods like the normal things they are. Yes, even you Phillip. You have permission!
"This cup has changed my life. Often by the time bills were paid, I couldn't afford pads and had to use toilet paper rolled up, which would often bleed through. Now, I feel so much more confident and can just get on with my day and my life. Thank you Wā Collective" - Charlie
The difference one Wā Cup makes is huge (unlike the cups, they fold up super small 😉)
Just one cup:
🍒 Prevents around 2500 disposables entering landfill
🍒 Saves thousands of dollars
🍒 Helps someone in need, no strings attached
🍒 2.4 Million disposable menstrual products will not reach landfill this year. Cup Yeah!
🍒 ... saving menstruators and their communities NZD$780K this year alone
🍒 3000 ovary-bearers alleviated from the line period poverty
🍒 Thousands and thousands of lives enhanced
🍒 Hundreds of thousands of progressive conversations catalysed
It's not what you may expect
You see, you don’t have to identify as a woman or girl in order to have a pair of ovaries. Likewise, not all women menstruate. Periods do not have to be the epitome of femininity. For this reason, Wā Collective isn't gender based… it’s ovary based instead.
"CAN YOU STOP SAYING THE WORD MENSTRUATE ALREADY?"
Nope. And we aren't sorry about it. Half the planet menstruates. In fact, if it wasn’t for that, not even Auntie Agnes would be able to whisper away the subject, as she wouldn’t be born. We have found that the more we all talk about it, the more normalised periods become. Pete from our office can tell you all about that.
No sanitary business here
The word sanitary refers to conditions that affect hygiene and health. When sanitary is used in conjunction with periods, it indirectly implies dirtiness and uncleanliness; hence needing a sanitary item to ‘fix’ this. Sanitary item can also encompass items such as soap and shampoo etc. Don't want to be putting that in a vagina! Instead, the term ‘menstrual product’ is clear, to the point and works at removing the taboo and the shame surrounding menstruation. Give it a crack - you are the change!
Check your flow against our flowchart to find your perfect size.
Wā Cups are medium firmness and fold up to about the size of a tampon for insertion.
60mm long, 42cm rim diameter, 25ml capacity
If you are worried about putting something inside you, are a teen, have petite anatomy, have a low cervix or a light flow, our mini will treat you right.
Recommended for under 30s
70mm long, 42cm rim diameter, 30ml capacity
Haven’t had a baby vaginally, the mini doesn’t quite sound like you, or you don’t know your cervix height? Size one is your cup and it’s our most popular.
Recommended for under 30s
70mm long, 46mm rim diameter, 40ml capacity
If you have given birth vaginally, or have a heavy flow, or feel you have weaker pelvic floor muscles, then this cup is perfect for you.
Recommended for over 30s
We recommend you flow over to our in-depth sizing to find your perfect size - it's really great
Hey Friend, we're open as an essential service 🍒
Janine is packing cups from the family farm. Postage 2 -3 days 🍒