Her Campus UIC had the privilege of speaking with, Maria, the president of the Planned Parenthood Generation Action at UIC. Club Spotlight is a new profile series, at Her Campus UIC, aimed to collaborate with and to promote other student organizations on campus.
Last fall, UIC welcomed Planned Parenthood’s Generation Action (PPGA)!
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Senior, Maria Valle-Coto isn’t only majoring in Neuroscience, she’s the President of PPGA. She had been working with Planned Parenthood, for about a year, before starting the organization. “They wanted to start having a presence on campuses around the Chicago area,” she explained, “I was already a student, so it seemed like a good fit, so I got it started!”
PPGA is part of the Action Fund of Planned Parenthood, focusing on political advocacy and education. PPGA does not offer any of Planned Parenthood’s healthcare clinical services.
Since the new election, there has been a lot of tension between the presidential administration and Planned Parenthood; however, Chicago has been very supportive and willing to participate. Maria also explains how UIC, being part of Public Education, have to provide space for all beliefs or thoughts. “We’ve been very well received by the students at UIC because they’re aware of the great work we do.”
PPGA also has an ongoing petition, fighting for birth control, and it’s a campaign started by Planned Parenthood Federation of America. By law, UIC had to start providing students with birth control through either Campus Care or the Wellness Fee. This charge covers doctor visits, the actual birth control medication, including any procedure to put in and out – anything associated with birth control, it’s covered. “Our side of it was waiting to show students: ‘This is what UIC has done for you’,” she said, “with the petition, we wanted to bring attention to [the services]; sort of like a thanks to UIC…but we’re also hoping to, sort of, put them on the spot and ask UIC to pledge to not discontinue that care.”
Sign the #Fight4BirthControl Petition here!
Also, in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, PPGA will be hosting Take Back the Night. It’s an open event set to provide an open space for survivors of sexual assault to share their stories and to educate. “Here’s an open space for you to tell your story, but here’s stuff so you can actually help others…this is what you can do.”
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There’s going to be storytelling, the CEO of Planned Parenthood Illinois is giving a talk, presentations, then the floor will be open to other survivors and ally organizations.
I encourage you all to come, collegiettes! You never know who might be sharing…
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