WWU’s Morse Leadership Institute to host Celeste Mergens, author of 'The Power of Days,' on May 28

Founder of Days for Girls International to address resilience and women's equity

BELLINGHAM, WA, May 20 -- On Tuesday, May 28 -- the International Day of Action on Women’s Health -- author and activist Celeste Mergens will discuss her new book, "The Power of Days," at Western Washington University.

The book talk and signing, co-hosted by Western's Morse Leadership Institute and the AS Bookstore, will be held in Academic West 204 with doors to open at 4 p.m. and the talk to begin at 4:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

Celeste Mergens is the founder of Days for Girls International, an award-winning nonprofit that has provided menstrual wellness resources and health education to nearly 3 million people in 145 countries, including nearly 300,000 refugees. HuffPost has named DfG as a “Next Ten” organization poised to change the world in the next decade.

Mergens has received numerous awards and recognition for her work, including the Women’s Economic Forum’s Woman of the Decade, and Washington State’s America Mother of the Year. She has also been featured in O, the Oprah Magazine; Forbes; and the Stanford Social Review.

According to DfG’s website, “Period poverty is a term used to describe the struggle that many women and girls face because they lack access to adequate menstrual health management supplies and education, which can have serious consequences."

DfG’s impact includes assisting in the creation of 119 “enterprises” across multiple countries, which provides employment, as well as menstrual health and hygiene needs to their surrounding communities. For those countries where enterprises have not yet been created 584 volunteer chapters across 31 countries, including one of the very first chapters here in Whatcom County, make kits that are distributed freely. This work is important because menstrual health management is a matter of human rights, and a critical component to achieving gender equity.

The AS Bookstore will have copies of "The Power of Days" available to purchase. Attendees are invited to park in the C lots on the south end of campus at no charge.

WWU is an equal opportunity institution. For disability accommodations, please contact Karen Stout at 360-650-2563 or Karen.Stout@wwu.edu. At least 5 days advance notice is appreciated.

About the Institute

Western's Morse Leadership Institute provides a minor in Leadership Studies, as well as a variety of courses open to the broader student body. MLI partners with local nonprofits and provides a variety of on- and off-campus events.