“I’ve been to places where we can’t even use the toilet because it’s a urinal, and no changing facilities so we had to get changed in the car park.”
That’s what inspired ex-Liverpool Feds players Rachael Mutch and Jo Murray to create a pack for females and those who play football on their period.
The “Just-In-Casey” bag contains organic sanitary products, protein snack bars and pain patches.
Several clubs have now stocked up on the packs and Rachael hopes more will follow.
“The facilities at grassroots are not acceptable for people who are trying to play at the same level as male counterparts,” she tells Radio 1 Newsbeat.
“I don’t think I’ve been to a facility that has any period products that can be purchased – and when you do, it’s like a pound for three pads”.
She says younger players find it difficult to come to training while menstruating.
“They don’t feel like they can go to their manager and say, ‘I don’t feel right today, because I am on my period.’
“It’s seen as: ‘If you want to be on the same level as men then you shouldn’t be complaining about stuff like that.’ That’s the stigma we wanted to get around.”
Rachael and Jo set up a crowdfunder to raise money for the products, and had help from a few different companies.
They started off with pads and tampons then added magazines, pain relief and snack bars over time.
“We decided to put it in a boot bag so it looked like the equipment that you take into a football changing room.
“That helped the male managers to be able to just carry it in with their equipment and meant there’s no stigma.
“The players don’t feel like it’s something they have to hide – if they need to use it, they can just use it,” Rachael says.
The bags have been used by clubs like the Brighton Seagulls, England’s beach soccer team and the Manchester FA have purchased some too.
Rachel hopes other FAs take the idea on board too.
“It’d be great if we could go right across the country – it’s still a very male dominated within the facility sector and I don’t believe it’s good enough.”
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