Jewelry for Choice (JfC) is a local group of jewelry artists committed to the pro-choice cause. The group began in 2006 with its first show at founder Tara's house. Since then, they have held regular shows around town including at Union Arts, Bella Vino, the Athens Public Library and currently at Moku Espresso and Caf√©.
This group of about a dozen artists make jewelry as individuals and also collaborate on a line called NEVER AGAIN. The NEVER AGAIN line of jewelry makes a political statement using hangers as a reminder that before abortion was made legal, many women tried this method to end a pregnancy, often with serious complications or death.
Each artist has a unique style to his or her jewelry, making the sales a great place to find the perfect piece of jewelry for yourself or a friend. Jewelry for Choice donates 25 percent of their sales to a local pro-choice organization. To date Planned Parenthood of Southeast Ohio has received more than $2,500 in donations from JfC.
The artists feel empowered to raise money for a cause they each believe passionately in, and are grateful to have a way to give back to an organization that has been there for them in various ways. "úThe people who come to our shows really like that they can pick a unique, handmade piece of jewelry that supports local artists and a great cause," says Audrey Yane, jewelry artist and a key organizer for the group. "úIt makes a more meaningful gift for friends and family who support women's health and reproductive rights."
The next Jewelry for Choice show will be May 2 at Moku Espresso and Caf√© located at 540 W. Union St. from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. You can view the artists involved and their work at www.jewelryforchoice.com.
Planned Parenthood of Southeast Ohio is proud to participate in a nationwide campaign with MTV and the Kaiser Family Foundation and to officially unveil "úGYT: Get Yourself Tested," a campaign to increase testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among those under 25 years of age.
GYT kicks off with a mix of promotions on-air, online and in the real world that will unfold throughout this month in recognition of National STD Awareness Month.
Without Planned Parenthood of Southeast Ohio, my life would be less than it is today. First, I have been enriched by working with all the amazing volunteers, staff and my fellow Leadership Council members. Through my involvement with Planned Parenthood, I have had the opportunity to participate in a variety of important †activities, such as canvassing Columbus neighborhoods for the Barack Obama campaign and lobbying state representatives for the Ohio Prevention First Act. I have seen these efforts make positive change in my communities, both large and small.
Pro-choice activist Lois Whealey's life hangs around her neck and decorates her bright red jacket.
The charms laced around her silver chain include emblems from her three alma maters "ď Stanford, University of Michigan and Ohio University "ď and for each of her three children and three grandchildren.
Below the crowded charm necklace are scattered Whealey's buttons. One button reads "úPro Child, Pro Family, Pro Choice," from her Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC) group. Whealey is also active in the American Association of University Women, the League of Women Voters and the Planned Parenthood Affiliates of Ohio.
"úIt has always been important in my family to have strong women," Whealey said. "úThat's why I have always felt so strongly that a woman's political, social and economic rights need protecting."
This past year has brought many exciting events for Planned Parenthood of Southeast Ohio. Most recently was the 21st annual Chocolate and Champagne Affaire held Feb. 21 at the newly renovated Eclipse Company General Store in The Plains.
Some 175 of PPSEO's dedicated supporters enjoyed an evening of decadent desserts, savory hors d'oeuvres, champagne, music and a spirited live auction, silent auction and "úchoice" raffle.
Not your old Athens Planned Parenthood "ď Planned Parenthood of Southeast Ohio [PPSEO] now offers new services and better care. Since the summer of 2007 and our move to a new location, 1005 E. State St., PPSEO has provided improved access to reproductive health services "ď family planning, contraception, and the diagnosis and treatment of sexually transmitted infections. All services are confidential. Information and education are available for individuals to make responsible reproductive health decisions.
The mission of Planned Parenthood of Southeast Ohio is to make every child a wanted child by:
Providing confidential reproductive and complementary health care for women, men and teens;
Offering education that enhances each person's ability to make responsible reproductive health decisions;
Advocating public policies that support comprehensive reproductive health education and guarantee the rights and access of each individual to complete and confidential reproductive health services.
Thirty-eight years ago Planned Parenthood began operations in Athens as Planned Parenthood of Southeast Ohio (PPSEO), serving the nine-county southeast Ohio region (including Athens, Gallia, Hocking, Jackson, Lawrence, Meigs, Ross, Vinton and Washington counties). Since then, many thousands of women (and some men, too!) have received reproductive health care through PPSEO clinics.
Currently, the clinic in Athens offers gynecological exams, birth control, pregnancy testing, pregnancy options education, sexually transmitted infection testing and prevention, HIV testing, male reproductive health services, and education and outreach services. In 2008, 1,136 patients were served at the clinic - 816 received birth control, 703 received annual exams, 359 tests were administered for sexually transmitted infections, and 520 students at five schools received education presentations.