Jana Girdauskas always wanted to become the CEO of a non-profit organization and in 2017, that dream became a reality. That year, Jana launched The Period Purse.
After encountering a person experiencing homelessness while driving, but without any items to give, Jana began questioning what this individual would do during menstruation. Curious, concerned and committed, Jana was compelled to fill one purse with menstrual products and other wellness items. She planned to keep the pack in her car for a person in need. With everything to fill the purse at home, Jana was just missing the physical bag. So, she asked a local Facebook group if anyone had a spare "period purse" to share.
Within a month, Jana received 350 purses filled with donated product. Today, The Period Purse is an official volunteer-run non-profit organization that supports hundreds of local menstruators living in Toronto shelters. The Period Purse has also expanded to nine additional chapters across Ontario including in Brantford, Durham Region, London, Mississauga, Ottawa, Sault Ste. Marie, Stratford, Toronto East and Toronto West
When she is not talking about periods, Jana is also a teacher who works in special education. She is a mother of two and lives with her family in Toronto's west end.