This morning I attended a breakfast fundraiser for Women Care Global. I must admit, I was not familiar with WCG and I was intrigued to gather some information at the event. Instead of a traditional not-for-profit business model, WCG actually sells and distributes different forms of birth control to be able to support their initiatives, which mostly include bringing contraceptives and family planning strategies to women all over the world. The CEO Saundra Pelletier called this a “Robin Hood approach.’
One of their products, Essure provides permanent birth-control to women without painful surgery or implants. The advertising campaign is of a blonde women standing proudly with the words “I’m Sure” hanging above her head, but the representative I spoke with told me that for women in developing countries who have no access to birth control and already have too many children, they are the ones who are really sure. The pamphlet I received said that approximately 800 women a day die from preventable causes related to pregnancy and that children who have lost their mothers are ten times more likely to die prematurely. Those statistics are sobering to say the least. Unlike a tubal ligation, Essure is a non-surgical way to block your fallopian tubes. Basically, a doctor inserts a catheter into the fallopian tubes which will eventually cause enough scar tissue in the uterus to permanently block the tubes. This procedure is less invasive and arguably just as effective, not to mention cheaper that a traditional ‘tube-tying.’ In fact, supposedly it only takes ten minutes. Total game-changer.
With all of the talk of women’s rights and contraceptives in this last presidential campaign, and everyone’s complete shock that we are still even having these conversations, as American women we are obviously very privileged when you consider that 215 million women worldwide have an unmet need for contraception. Now that we have voted to secure Planned Parenthood’s funding, let’s take that energy and try to ensure that reproductive choices are available for women throughout the world.
If you are in San Francisco today, there is an event at the Hedge Gallery with all proceeds benefiting Women’s Care Global. Organized by a laundry list of stylish women, including Lawren Howell from Vogue, the event raises both money and awareness by selling goods from designers such as Irene Neuwirth and Stevie Howell. Instead of buyers remorse, here you actually get a chart that lets you know how many women you have helped provide modern contraception for. Plus, everything for sale is really cute. Because, let’s be honest, even for charity you don’t want to buy stuff you don’t like. I loved everything about this event and hope that not only do they continue to put it on, but that it gets bigger each year. Shopping has literally never felt better than this.
Women of Style and Substance: A Fashion Fundraiser at The Hedge Gallery, located at 501 Pacific Avenue in North Beach, San Francisco.
The event is open to the public from 11am-3pm. For More info click here.