Tampons and pads fill the office cupboards for Nellie’s women’s shelter.

That’s because, at any point during a given month, around 30 women are on their periods while using the Toronto facility.

“Can you imagine the number of sanitary pads we need?” said Margarita Mendez, the executive director.

Shelters like Mendez’s don’t receive funding targeted at menstrual hygiene products, so they wind up buying supplies or seeking donations for their homeless and street-involved clients who typically can’t afford them on their own.