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Lakeview woman collects, donates feminine hygiene product bags to girls in need

As she puts it, if the kids can’t afford to eat, they probably can’t afford other necessities, so she and others are doing their part to help.

NEW ORLEANS — As current state and local coronavirus stay-at-home orders keep people in their homes, many of them are getting around to some spring cleaning, trying to find a good place to send their donations.

WWLTV’s Karen Swensen found one Lakeview woman who began recycling a common household item for girls in need.

Cherie Melancon-Franz was looking for a way to contribute to others, helping them to cope with the coronavirus pandemic.

“During the pandemic, I couldn’t work like many of you,” Melancon-Franz said. “So, I thought I wanted to do something good for the community.

Cleaning her clutter like many other Americans this time of the year, Melancon-Franz realized her unused makeup bags could be used to help someone else. The founder of Thinkrella, a stem-based learning and entertainment company for kids, wanted to help girls in need.

“Most women in our area have unused makeup bags that you get free when you buy makeup from different companies,” Melancon-Franz said. “I’m basically asking for donations of those bags and feminine care products to be given to young girls in the community that are going to get free lunch in our schools.”

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As she puts it, if the kids can’t afford to eat, they probably can’t afford other necessities, so she and others are doing their part to help.

“Feminine hygiene products, clean makeup bags — we have given 86 to the Hommer A. Plessy Community School in the French Quarter,” she said.

The director of development at the school, Julie Hanks, personally handed them out.

“Lately, we’ve been able to fill them with these wonderful bags with feminine hygiene products,” she said. “ Kids are really excited because they can use them next year for pencil bags and crayons and things of that nature.”

There’s more where that came from; Melancon-Franz said she has 100 more bags stuffed and ready to go.

So, people who have makeup bags or who want to donate products — or people who represent a school that offers free lunches and would like to distribute the bags and products to students, Melancon-Franz said people can text her at 504.232.1394.

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