Planned Parenthood Changed My Life
Many, many moons ago I volunteered at Planned Parenthood as a birth control educator. I saw women of all ages seeking help – some as young as 12. Thank goodness they had a safe place to go for quality care. Regardless of any person’s ability to pay, Planned Parenthood gladly provided birth control, education, and check-ups. The organization impressed me, and my short time there set me on the path that continues to inspire me. Because I saw the opportunity to offer emerging adults comprehensive reproductive education and healthcare to help prevent unwanted pregnancies I developed a passion that has been simmering for the last three decades. I still believe, if we teach our youth about birth control, abortion can be greatly reduced. Fortunately, Planned Parenthood sets out to do exactly as its name states: to plan parenthood.
The formidable and determined Margaret Sanger understood the need for women to have more autonomy in their lives. First, she believed they should be able to plan their own parenthood. Initially formed 101 years ago in 1916, Planned Parenthood has stood the test of time. And, thank goodness, right?! Unfortunately, despite the prevalence of health care clinics in nearly every community, many people are still unable to access or afford medical care. Many lack insurance or aren’t aware of community medical resources. I have three kids and that was more than enough for me. Therefore, I cannot imagine how my life would have been without the option to choose the size of my family. Those nights out with girlfriends, enjoying a glass of wine, discussing political issues —or not—would not be possible.
Planned Parenthood is one of the most recognized and respected medical providers for women—and men—in the world.
- Around the globe, Planned Parenthood offers health education and healthcare services to five million people.
- At Planned Parenthood, services include annual exams for women, cancer screenings, vasectomies, and STI testing.
- STI screenings make up 42% of Planned Parenthood’s services.
- 80% of Planned Parenthood’s patients want to prevent a pregnancy.
- Abortion procedures represent merely 3% of Planned Parenthood’s services
- 60 million people visit Planned Parenthood’s website a year. It offers medically-accurate reproductive health information to allow individuals to make informed decisions regarding their reproductive health. In addition, the information is current and easy to understand. There are videos, handouts, visuals, and interesting articles answering a variety of questions for young people, parents and professionals.
Recently the president of Planned Parenthood spoke in San Francisco. So, I’ve shared a link to the conversation. While you’re here, take a listen!