Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA

by Women's Health Specialists
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA
Cultivating Young Women Leaders in Northern CA

Celebrating International Women's Day at the Intersections 

Women's Health Network and Women's Health Specialists are proud to join forces on our 5th Annual International Women's Day Celebration that featured speakers, local artists and performers, booths featuring women-connected businesses and vendors. This year's theme was championing gender equity #betterforbalance. 

The event was organized by a committee of young women, community volunteers and staff. One of the highlights of our committee was the youth leadership that took place. Several youth providing community outreach and recruiting sponsorships and donations, preparing event materials and coordinating on the day of the event. 

International Women’s Day featured several local performers and community activist and artists from all different backgrounds. Each of them speaking and sharing their truth in celebration of this day. The evening included an opening by the Indigenous people of the land with a prayer and song followed by three staff members of Women's Health Specialists that provided a welcome done in their traditional languages, Mien, Spanish and Pauite. 

The evening speakers included a variety of topics such as sexual violence, abortion, immigration, racial justice, transgender rights, white supremacy and reproductive justice. Each person sharing their own lived experiences with the community. We even had one of our own youth leaders speak at the event and share her story on three generations of women. Local performers sang songs, danced, read poems and each one of these performances shared a message related to women’s rights, gender expression, emotional and mental health and more. 

The keynote speech was a conversation with renowned feminist activist and Professor Loretta Ross, who draws on half a century of activism. Dynamic and insightful, Dr. Ross's conversations inspire the transformation of apathy and anger into activism for social justice. Loretta held the attention of everyone in the room. Sharing her life experience on the barriers to accessing contraception, rape and incest, abortion and teaching on white supremacy. Loretta broke down reproductive justice and shared what it means to do work as a feminist. 

It was a powerful space for activism! We celebrated at the intersections, uplifted community voices and stood in solidarity together. We look forward to continuing our support for youth and women in our community and with your help this is possible. Thank you for supporting this work. 

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Women's Health Specialists Outreach Driver Program

Over the past few months our communities have been devastated by two of the largest wild fires in Northern California. Two of our clinics are located in the counties where the fires occurred, the Carr Fire in Shasta County and the Camp Fire in Butte County. Both of these fires leaving thousands of individuals homeless in our services area. In response to this event, Women's Health Specialists has been working hard to support individuals affected by the fires and continue to make sure that reproductive health services are available during this crucial time. 


Women’s Health Specialists has recently started a temporary program called the Outreach Drivers. This program began to support individuals who were affected by the Camp Fire in Butte County. The project has 4 women outreach drivers who were directly affected by the fire themselves coordinating and leading this program. These 4 women work as community outreach drivers to support Carr Fire victims in accessing their health care needs. The outreach drivers provide free rides to and from Women’s Health Specialists for anyone affected by the Camp Fire. The purpose of this project is to help support women who don’t have transportation get to and from their appointments. 

 

Women's Health Specialists Outreach Drivers are connecting women to a wide range of services which include birth control, pregnancy testing, abortion, pre-natal referrals, trans health referrals, services for men, STI testing and treatment, HIV testing, free condoms and safe sex supplies. Free Rides are offered Monday- Friday to clients. The drivers have discrete business cars that pick-up clients and drop them off anywhere in Butte County.

Outreach Drivers work to promote this project throughout Butte County by distributing flyers, condoms, service cards and provide education sessions. These women are working to connect women to care during this time. Our communty is strong and women are empowered to help others. 

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Supporting Young Women Through Adoption 

Since starting our adoption program, Adoption Choices of Northern California, Women’s Health Specialists has assisted hundreds of birthmoms and adoptive parents.

Our adoption program focuses on pregnant women and ensures that they are in control of their adoption plans. Birthmoms select the family, make decisions regarding the birth and hospital stay and determine the amount of contact that will be maintained after the placement. We empower pregnant women of all ages choosing adoption to create the adoption plan that will be the best fit for them. 

Most of our clients are in rural Northern California. One of our recent cases was with a birthmom in rural North Eastern California who placed with a lesbian couple.  In picking a family, she felt drawn to this couple and had a special connection with where they lived since her first child was born in the same community. The birthmom came to adoption because she felt it would be the best thing for the child as she was not ready to parent two children alone; financially or emotionally. Our staff traveled to her for all of our meetings including the meetings with the the adoptive family.  After the birth and hospital stay, the adoptive family was in contact through daily texting and exchanged pictures of the baby for a few months to help the birthmom as she moved through her grief. They have a very open and caring relationship with each other and are so happy to have found one another through Adoption Choices.

Choosing adoption can be a difficult and emotional decision but when women are given control over their bodies and choices in their adoption, they are better prepared to handle their grief.

Our program is free to women placing. Our services include full adoption facilitation which for birthmoms includes; providing screened adoptive parents, coordination of meetings with adoptive family selected, hospital and post birth contact facilitation, pre and post birth adoption support, adoption counseling with a therapist in your area, and we travel to where birth moms live throughout Northern California. We also offer ongoing support groups for birthmothers and all members of the adoption triad.

Your support helps us continue to provide free services to birthmoms and supoprt young women through adoption. 

Here's some quotes from our clients:

“Thank you for your help in making my adoption a positive experience.”

“I don’t know what would have happened with everything if you hadn’t been there. You made a difficult situation into an easier one. You and your program are a miracle.”

 "This was the best decision I ever made. Thank you so much Adoption Choices!"

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Transforming Yourself and Community! Demystifying your body through slef-determination and liberation! 

Speculum Kit Giveaway Day

Each July, volunteers and staff put together about 300 kits that include a mirror, speculum, how-to booklet and a flashlight. These kits are given to clinic visitors on one day, in honor of our Founder and Self-Help Advocate, Dido Hasper.

WHS was founded on the concept of self-help, demystifying your body, and putting your own health in your hands. In honor of Dido’s continued influence in women’s self-determination and health care choices, the staff and clients remain greatly inspired. What is self help? Self help is taking a mirror, flashlight and speculum to view your own cervix. 

This year two young women took leadership in hosting the giveaway. Together they distributed flyers to share with community this special day for women to receive a kit and transform them selves. These women shared with their friends and community their stories of how powerful knowing about your body can be. Kits were distributed throughout the day to young women who wanted to learn more. It was an inspiring day brining community together and supporting these young leaders in transforming the community. 

Who Is Dido Hasper?

Dido was the Founding and Executive Director of Women's Health Specialists. A true pioneer in the women’s health movement. Dido put the health centers on the map, weathering opposition from anti-abortionists, funding crises, and fighting social bigotry. Using the vital lessons and knowledge Dido shared so generously with all of us, we will continue our work in her memory.  

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Young women are stepping into their power through organizing and facilitating a peer educator prevention training.

Over the last few months young emerging leaders have hit the streets doing peer to peer outreach by sharing information on sexual and reproductive health services. They are mentored and trained on how to have compassionate, non-judgmental conversations around STI/HIV testing and treatment, birth control, pregnancy, abortion, condoms, annual checkups and more. Through outreach they connect people to care by making referrals to Women’s Health Specialists and reduce stigma around reproductive and sexual health.

Recently, a group of these young leaders successfully completed facilitating an entire peer educator prevention training for young people between the ages of 15-19. The young leaders were involved from the planning and recruitment of the training to the preparation and facilitation of the training. It started with them picking a date to host the training and then recruiting several participants through different forms of outreach to register for the training. Each young leader took on multiple roles that included prepping the folders and materials for the training, training set up, registration check in and training facilitation. This was a training that was led by youth for youth. Each young leader chose a topic and activity to facilitate with the participants. They led activities and discussions with their peers having bold and open conversations around sex, pregnancy, STD/HIV, barriers to service, stigma, abortion, consent, confidentiality, access, risky behaviors, birth control, self-help and more. It was powerful training led by several powerful young women. It was fun, exciting and engaging! 

On completion of the training the feedback from the young women who facilitated the training was positive. They shared how they felt empowered and supported. These young leaders are continuing their work through facilitating community education sessions, mentoring new peer outreach workers, coordinating organizational events and guiding our organization into the future. 

We thank you for your support and dedication to helping us support young women step into their power. 

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Organization Information

Women's Health Specialists

Location: Redding, CA - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @whs@cawhs
Project Leader:
Linda McCrea
Redding, CA United States
$24,370 raised of $30,800 goal
 
287 donations
$6,430 to go
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