This International Women’s Day we’d like to introduce you to Eloise Hall and Isobel Marshall, the founders of Social Enterprise TABOO.
100% of net profits of TABOO go towards supporting women in the community facing period poverty, with 1 in 10 girls around the world unable to afford period products.
Eloise and Isobel started with a mission to educate around Period Poverty and now, not long later, they’ve developed TABOO period products, a ‘pad it forward’ initiative allowing customers and brands to support the cause, alongside their podcast, social network and education sessions in schools. All in the name of supporting women who may not be able to afford menstrual products, with a view to eradicate Period Poverty. This is their story.
Q: Tell us about your Social Enterprise – TABOO?
TABOO is a brand of organic cotton period products sold in Australia, with all net profits dedicated to our mission of eradicating global period poverty and improving menstrual wellbeing. We sell our range of products online and through several retail chains in South Australia. Alongside selling a great product, we have a strong focus on educating Australians about menstrual healthcare and its role within the wider discussion of gender equality. We also aim to use our platform to advocate for the social and structural change necessary to see our mission realised.
Q: What has been your biggest lesson in business to date?
TABOO wouldn’t have launched or sustained itself successfully if we weren’t working towards a clearly defined mission the whole way through. All the hours, energy, creativity, and problem solving given by our team and wider community, has always come from a place of passion, and striving towards a greater purpose. We couldn’t have expected that same input or support from the people around us, (or ourselves!) if the outreach aspect of TABOO wasn’t our focus. Moral of the story; always know why you’re doing something and be able to communicate that to your team, customers, and stakeholders.
Q: As women in business what is the biggest change, you’d like to see for gender equality?
We’d like to see social and structural change to support working mothers. This isn’t something that we’ve been personally impacted by, but we’re aware that wanting to have kids as a woman is really intimidating in terms of how it’s going to impact your career trajectory. Being a mother shouldn’t represent gaps on a CV, because it is a job role that requires so many skills in itself! Paternity leave needs to become more and more normalised and expected, and financial childcare supports would allow so many people in the workforce and of course in business, to have more agency over how their time is spent.
Q: What is your biggest female inspiration?
There are so many public figures that we draw inspiration from every day. It’s amazing to have access to so many words of wisdom, encouragement, experience and advice through social media. From a personal perspective, my Grandma is a huge inspiration to me. She started a business from her home in the 60’s, teaching women creative skills and it grew to have a presence in most capital cities of Australia, with a weekly segment on national TV as part of her business model. Despite how awesome she is, she is the humblest person I know. She is the most encouraging, fun-loving spirit and there are so many aspects of her character, moral compass and priorities that I would be honoured to reflect in my day to day life.