Amika Sara George MBE is a British activist who campaigns against period poverty in the United Kingdom. George was inspired to take action after reading an article describing how many poor British women missed school due to stigma around menstruation and/or being unable to afford sanitary products such as tampons. At the age of 17, she started a popular petition addressed to Westminster (which gained over 200,000 signatories), and while still in secondary school she founded the #FreePeriods organization in April 2017.
As part of her campaigning, she has organized protests aimed at convincing the UK government to provide free sanitary products to school children, featuring speakers such as Adwoa Aboah, Suki Waterhouse, Jess Phillips, and Daisy Lowe. She has written for Vogue about the role of activism among young people, and also for The Guardian and The Telegraph about how the Scottish government’s commitment to providing free sanitary products for poor students should be emulated in England. George has often commented on the lengths young people who menstruate go when they cannot afford pads or tampons, including using items of clothing, toilet roll, or using the same tampon many days in a row (putting them at risk of toxic shock syndrome). She additionally has remarked upon how education for men must be improved such that they can engage with tackling menstruation taboo and period poverty.
In March 2019 chancellor of the exchequer, Philip Hammond announced that secondary schools in England would receive funding to provide sanitary products free-of-charge to poorer young people. In response to her activism, George has been honored on the Time Most Influential Teens of 2018 list, The Big Issue Top 100 Changemakers, and Teen Vogue 21 under 21 (after being nominated by Emma Watson for the latter). George won a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Goalkeepers Campaign Award in 2018, which she was presented at a ceremony in New York City. As of April 2019, George is studying History at Murray Edwards College, University of Cambridge, and was described by college master Dame Barbara Stocking as ‘inspirational’.
George was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2021 Birthday Honors for services to education.
Amika Sara George Bio