Schull firm helping Vodafone give staff free period products

September 25th, 2021 10:05 PM

By Emma Connolly

Cork’s Anne O’Leary, chief executive of Vodafone, with Fiona Parfrey of Riley, at the announcement. (Photo: INPHO/James Crombie)

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VODAFONE is to provide all its female employees with free eco-friendly period products, thanks to a collaboration with a West Cork company. 

Schull-based Riley has teamed up with Vodafone in a partnership which will impact over 500 of its workers nationwide. 

Run by Aine Kilkenny, Fiona Parfrey and Lauren Duggan, Riley was launched during the pandemic. 

It’s founded on the belief that people deserve a positive, sustainable solution to their period that also suits their lifestyle.

The average pad has an approximate plastic content of 90%. That means these products can live on for 500 years as waste after their brief usefulness has passed. The average woman will use 11,000 non-recyclable tampons in the course of her lifetime, equivalent to 5,500 plastic bags. Riley’s mission is to ensure their period products do as little damage to our environment as possible by bringing periods into the 21st century.

The partnership with Riley will help Vodafone meet its ambition to be recognised as the world’s best employer for women by 2025. 

Other pioneering programmes implemented by Vodafone include flexible working policies, maternity and parental leave that supports families to share responsibilities in the home, ReConnect to attract talented women back to the workplace, global menopause commitment and a ground-breaking domestic violence and abuse policy.

Cork woman Anne O’Leary, CEO of Vodafone Ireland, said: ‘This highlights our ongoing commitment to creating a more inclusive culture. It’s fantastic to see a small Irish business like Riley see a problem and find a sustainable solution through the development of their eco-friendly period products. Our partnership with Riley is another positive step towards supporting our colleagues through all life stages.’

Fiona said they were thrilled with the partnership. ‘Organisations working together is a major piece of the puzzle towards female equality,’ she said.

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