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Planned Parenthood

West and Northern Michigan

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7/7/14
PPWNM's Summer Newsletter
Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) is celebrating 50 years and we are having a great time doing it, with big events, big renovation projects, big fundraising campaigns, and big plans for the future! We invite you to read all about how we are recognizing our Golden Anniversary this year, and how you can be a part of it, in our Summer 2014 Newsletter.

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7/1/14
Public Affairs Pulse: SCOTUS Rules Against Women — Twice

Click here for the July edition of the Public Affairs Pulse

Click here for back editions of the Pulse


6/1/14
Public Affairs Pulse: Educating Teens, Educating Donors

Click here for the June edition of the Public Affairs Pulse

Click here for back editions of the Pulse


5/6/14
PPWNM Celebrates a Half-Century of Service with PPFA President Cecile Richards
Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) celebrated its 50-year anniversary with the Healthy Families Luncheon in Grand Rapids on May 6. PPWNM was honored to welcome Planned Parenthood Federation of America President Cecile Richards as its special guest and keynote speaker.

Read full story

Watch Cecile's speech on YouTube

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5/1/14
Public Affairs Pulse: Affordable Care Act Wrap-Up Edition

Click here for the May edition of the Public Affairs Pulse

Click here for back editions of the Pulse


4/11/14
For Parents Only! PPWNM to Host Talk Early Talk Often Workshops in Grand Rapids and Muskegon
Talk Early Talk Often is a nationally recognized workshop that gives parents of teens and 'tweens the skills to better communicate, listen, and respond when it comes to the topics of sexuality and abstinence. Dinner will be served, and THE FIRST 10 PARENTS TO REGISTER AND ATTEND EACH EVENT WILL RECEIVE $25 GIFT CARDS.

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The Grand Rapids TETO workshop is Thursday, April 24, 5:15-7:30 p.m. at MLK Leadership Academy in Grand Rapids. Register by calling 616.774.7005 or emailing education@ppwnm.org

The Muskegon TETO workshop is Thursday, May 22, 5:00-7:30 p.m. at Muskegon Middle School. Register by calling 231.215.3117 or emailing havrillam@ppwnm.org


4/10/14
PPWNM's Standing Tall Capital Campaign Shatters Goal!
We are proud to announce the successful conclusion of our nearly three-year Standing Tall capital campaign, with more than $4 million raised for special needs. Click here for full news release announcing all the details. Thank you to our very generous donors for making this announcement possible!


4/9/14
For Teens Only! Come to a Party. Eat Pizza. Win Prizes. Learn Stuff, Too.
Teens in the Grand Rapids and Muskegon areas, you are invited to join us for a party! What's the occasion? It's GYT (Get Yourself Tested) Month! Come eat pizza, win prizes, and learn about sexually transmitted infections and how to keep yourself healthy and protected. THE FIRST 10 TEENS TO REGISTER AND ATTEND EACH EVENT WILL RECEIVE $25 GIFT CARDS! This event is put on by teens, for teens. Come get the low-down from your peers!

The Grand Rapids GYT Party is Monday, April 21, 5:15-7:30 p.m. at City High School in Grand Rapids. Register by calling 616.774.7005 or emailing education@ppwnm.org.

The Muskegon GYT Party is Thursday, April 24, 3:00-5:30 p.m. at Muskegon High School. Register by calling 231.215.3117 or emailing havrillam@ppwnm.org


4/6/14 
April 6-13 is National Volunteer Week!
National Volunteer Week was established in 1974 to inspire and recognize the ways the people engage in and contribute to their communities. Almost 100 years ago, Planned Parenthood began as an all-volunteer organization. We're grateful for the compassionate and generous volunteers who support and protect the vital services we provide every day. We remain perpetually impressed by the dedication, passion, and energy of our volunteers. On this National Volunteer Week and every week, we're saying "thank you volunteers" for helping to make our work possible!

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4/2/14
April is GYT (Get Yourself Tested) Month
The sixth annual GYT: Get Yourself Tested campaign kicks off in April (STD Awareness Month) with on-air, online and on-the-ground activities across the country. Did you know one out of two sexually active young people will have an STD (sexually transmitted disease) by age 25 — and most of them won't even know they have it?! PPWNM is encouraging young people to "get yourself talking" about STDs — how they occur and how to avoid them — and to "get yourself tested" in the month of April if they are sexually active. PPWNM offers a $50 STD testing package for chlamydia, gonorrhea and HIV. Contact one of our health centers to make an appointment.   

PPWNM is also holding two GYT Parties for teens, one in Grand Rapids and one in Muskegon. The Grand Rapids event is on April 21, 5:15-7:30 p.m. at City High School in Grand Rapids. The Muskegon event is on April 24, 3:00-5:30 p.m. at Muskegon High School. The first ten students to sign up and attend each event will receive $25 gift cards. 

Click here for our GYT news release, which includes information about how to register for our GYT Parties.

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4/1/14
Public Affairs Pulse
Open enrollment for the Health Insurance Marketplace has ended for 2014, and the enrollment period for Michigan's Medicaid expansion— called the Healthy Michigan Plan — is just getting underway. Get all the latest information in the April edition of PPWNM's Public Affairs Pulse.

Click here for back editions of The Pulse


3/31/14
Michigan Rolls Out Medicaid Expansion: Healthy Michigan Plan
Beginning April 1, 2014, the state of Michigan is enrolling people in its new expanded Medicaid health insurance program called the Healthy Michigan Plan. This plan will cover your birth control and services at PPWNM, and much more! Click here to find out if you qualify and how you can apply for the Healthy Michigan Plan, Medicaid, and other state funding assistance programs.

If you are currently covered under the state's Plan First! health plan, that coverage will end on June 30, 2014. You will need to fill out the application to see if you qualify for any other assistance programs. If you do not qualify and do not have any other health insurance, you may still qualify for some type of funding assistance for your care at PPWNM. We can help you apply! Just contact one of our PPWNM health centers. You must claim any and all income you receive and show proof of income to apply.

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3/24/4
CREDO Mobile Supports PPWNM
Have you heard about CREDO mobile? The company, which provides phone and credit card services, donates a portion of its profits to "progressive nonprofit groups that work on a range of issues: women's rights, the environment, equality, peace, and social justice" according to its website. CREDO "members and friends" help pick recipients and vote on distribution of the donations each year. Through this program, CREDO has donated more than $76 million since 1985! We just received word that PPWNM's portion of the 2013 donations pool totals more than $1,700! In all, Planned Parenthood affiliates shared nearly $160,000! Thank you CREDO for promoting and supporting progressive social causes including Planned Parenthood!

Learn more about CREDO


3/4/14
Public Affairs Pulse

Check out our March newsletter for the latest on Michigan's new expanded Medicaid program called Healthy Michigan, and who will be eligible.

Click here for back editions of The Pulse


2/14/14
Remember the Condoms When You Celebrate Valentine's Day! 
Valentine's Day kicks off National Condom Week, and PPWNM wants to remind people about the importance of condom use during the "season of love." Use the links below to check out the coverage from mLive Grand Rapids of our "condom drop" at Grand Rapids Community College, and to read more about our other promotional efforts, and why condoms are so important.

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mLive article and photos

PPWNM news release


2/12/14
Traverse City: Need Health Insurance? Get Help Getting Covered

Planned Parenthood will co-sponsor an enrollment event to help you sign up for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act. The event is Saturday, February 22, 1-5 p.m. at the Grand Traverse Civic Center. There will be an informational presentation at 1 p.m., with sign-up assistance to follow. Reserve your spot by email: healthcaresignupTC@gmail.com.

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2/3/14
Public Affairs Pulse
Check out our February newsletter for the latest on a challenge to the buffer zone law, a newly proposed abortion restriction at the federal level, and a celebration of choice in Grand Rapids.

Click here for back editions of The Pulse


1/22/14
Film Presentation to Mark 41st Anniversary of Roe v. Wade Decision
Please join us for a night of reflection, education and exploration around the topic of abortion, 41 years after Roe v. Wade. This event, featuring a film screening and presentation, will be held on Wednesday, January 29, 2014, from 6-9 p.m. at Fountain Street Church, 24 Fountain St. NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.

The featured film is After Tiller, a 2013 documentary that intimately explores the highly controversial subject of third-trimester abortions in the wake of the 2009 assassination of Kansas practitioner Dr. George Tiller. The procedure is now performed by only four doctors in the United States, all former colleagues of Dr. Tiller, who risk their lives every day in the name of their unwavering commitment toward their patients. Dani Vilella of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan will also present A Brief History of Choice. Light snacks & beverages will be served. The event is free but a $5 donation to the Fountain Street Church Choice Fund is suggested. Space is limited, so please RSVP by email to dani.vilella@ppmchoice.org, or by calling PPWNM at (616) 774-7005.

Sponsored by Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan, Fountain Street Church Choice Fund, National Organization for Women Grand Rapids.


1/6/14
A Year in Review, A Look Ahead
Get a round-up of reproductive rights issues and debates leading into a mid-term election year in the January edition of PPWNM's Public Affairs Pulse.

Click here for back editions of The Pulse


12/11/13
Petoskey Physician Takes Over as PPWNM Medical Director
The medical directorship at Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) has recently changed hands, from one old friend to another. Now a Petoskey physician with more than 40 years of experience finds himself back in a familiar role. Dr. Daniel VerBurg, MD, recently assumed the position as PPWNM medical director, overseeing the agency's eight health centers. Dr. VerBurg takes over for Dr. Charles Newton, MD, who retired after eight years of service at PPWNM. The two physicians go way back, even serving their residencies together at the University of Michigan more than 40 years ago! 

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Read full story


12/06/13
PPWNM Announces First-Ever Change in Clinicians in Big Rapids
Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) announces the retirement of long-serving employee and Big Rapids Health Center Clinician Sherry Wood-Stieg (pictured, left). Wood-Stieg, a registered nurse and women's health care nurse practitioner, will end her 34-year career with Planned Parenthood on December 12, 2013.

While PPWNM says farewell to Wood-Stieg, the agency prepares to welcome back another Planned Parenthood veteran to take her place. Sherrie Vaughn (pictured, right) began her career with Planned Parenthood in Big Rapids back in 1980. That first stint lasted 12 years.

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Read full story here


11/19/13
PPWNM to Hold Free HIV Testing Day in Big Rapids
Planned Parenthood is offering free HIV testing at its Big Rapids Health Center on Tuesday, December 3, 2013, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. PPWNM offers private and confidential Rapid HIV testing, which involves a simple finger poke; results are available in just 20 minutes. Appointments for Free HIV Testing Day are strongly encouraged. Walk-ins will only be seen if there is availability. The health center is located at 110 Sanborn Avenue, Big Rapids. Call (231) 796-8612 to schedule your free HIV test today. This free testing day is to commemorate World AIDS Day, which is held annually on December 1.


11/14/13
We've Got Apps for That!
NEW and just for TEENS: whether it's struggling with peer pressure, talking about sex with parents or partners, or even planning for the future, teens have a lot to deal with and a lot of tough decisions to make. We may be able to help. Planned Parenthood has created some fun and interesting, user-friendly, interactive tools to help teens answer these difficult questions and face their futures head-on. Check 'em out and SHARE:

Get Apps


10/18/13 PPWNM Fall Newsletter We have lots to tell you about this fall at PPWNM! Read all about it in the fall 2013 PPWNM Connection newsletter. We are:

  • Undergoing renovations and remodeling at our headquarters and several health centers 
  • Experiencing a change in our medical leadership 
  • Celebrating our recent accreditation, which places us among the top Planned Parenthood affiliates

Plus, get the latest from the front lines of our advocacy work, and find out how our educators and teen peer leaders spent the summer.


10/01/13
Get Help Getting Covered!
PPWNM joins the Planned Parenthood Federation of America in launching a multimedia campaign to help inform and educate uninsured Michigan residents about the benefits and availability of new health insurance plans available for enrollment starting on October 1. The campaign includes online tools, including a new website, and information in our health centers that will help women get enrolled and make informed decisions so they can choose a new insurance plan that works best for them. Enrollment begins on Tuesday, October 1, and runs through March 31, 2014. 

Read full story here 

Check out plannedparenthoodhealthinsurancefacts.org 


9/28/13
Longtime PPWNM Staff Member Honored with Statewide Award
Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) is proud to congratulate PPWNM Director of Quality and Risk Management Janet Isabell, winner of the Michigan Reproductive Health Distinguished Service Award for 2013. The award is sponsored by the Michigan Department of Community Health and the Michigan Public Health Institute, and the recipient is recognized at the annual Michigan Family Planning Update, a statewide conference which was held this year on September 24--25 at Crystal Mountain Resort and Spa in Thompsonville.

Click here for full story


9/16/13
September is Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month
Have you had your well-woman exam lately? If you are feeling nervous about going, check out the "Wellness Exams" video on our YouTube channel to find out what to expect. Then go to ppwnm.org/healthcenters to call your nearest location and schedule an appointment!


9/4/13
Planned Parenthood Helping Spread the Word About New Insurance Coverage
"Being female will no longer be considered a preexisting condition" under the new health insurance options beginning Oct.1. Read all about our effort to get people signed up in this mLive article.


News conference held in Grand Rapids


8/28/13
PPWNM Applauds Approval of Medicaid Expansion in Michigan
Today nearly half a million hard-working, low-income families are one step closer to the security of quality health care coverage to receive lifesaving care when they need it. We are happy that the Michigan Senate listened to the citizens of Michigan who have been calling on the legislature to accept the federal funds to expand Medicaid coverage to nearly half a million of Michigan's working poor.

Read full statement here

Read details of vote in the Detroit Free Press


8/21/13
August is National Immunization Awareness Month
PPWNM offers the HPV vaccine for women and men ages 18-26. Funding assistance is available!
Click here to learn more about HPV


6/28/13
PPWNM Offers Free Summer Sex Ed Programs for Grand Rapids Area Teens
Teens: looking for something different to do this summer? Planned Parenthood is excited to offer its dynamic, interactive, fun and straight-talking comprehensive sex education programming for teens in the Grand Rapids area. This summer, the programs are being held at Fountain St. Church in downtown Grand Rapids. Teens have a chance to meet peers from all over the community while learning about relationships, communication, and sexual health and safety in a fun, relaxed and open atmosphere. The classes are taught by fully trained and experienced sexual health educators from Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan.

Meals are provided and teens receive a gift card upon completion of the full program. Transportation is not provided. Choose from:

Safer Choices Project for youth ages 12-19: Monday-Friday, July 15-19, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Peer Education for teens ages 14-18: Monday-Friday, July 22-Aug 1 (Thursday),10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

To learn more about the programs, including how to apply, email education@ppwnm.org


6/12/13
Free HIV Testing Day at PPWNM on Thursday, June 27
You are invited to "Take the test, take control" for FREE on Thursday, June 27, 2013, at any PPWNM health center in recognition of National HIV Testing Day. You must call and schedule an appointment. Call 800-230-PLAN (7526) for the Planed Parenthood health center nearest you or go to ppwnm.org/healthcenters for the list of PPWNM locations and phone numbers. Offer good only at PPWNM health centers. 

 


6/11/13
Obama Administration to Drop Fight Over EC OTC
The Obama Administration has announced that the FDA will comply with a federal judge's order to make emergency contraception available over the counter for all women, with no age restrictions.

"This is a historic moment for women's health and equity," said Planned Parenthood Federation of America President Cecile Richards.

Click here for full statement from Richards


5/24/13
PPWNM Hours Changes for week of May 27
All PPWNM Health Centers and Administrative Headquarters closed on Monday, May 27, 2013, for the Memorial Day Holiday; and on Wednesday, May 29, 2013, for staff training. PPWNM's Marquette Health Center closed from May 27-30;open Friday, May 31 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Health Center locations


5/22/13
Free Parent Workshop: Teens and Tech on Thursday, May 30
Kids and computers go hand in hand these days. What are your kids doing on their smart phone or tablet? The numbers are startling:

  • 75% are on social networking sites
  • 50% have experienced "digitally abusive behavior"
  • 25% have been cyberbullied
  • 20% have engaged in "sexting."

Learn what you need to know to stay one step ahead of your kids at our free workshop, Sex and Tech: Teens, Sexting, and Safe Use of Technology. The workshop features a guest speaker from the Washtenaw Area Council for Children, a full dinner, and a $25 gift card for parents who register in advance! The event is Thursday, May 30, from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. at PPWNM headquarters, 425 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids. Call (616) 774-7005 or e-mail education@ppwnm.org to register.


5/21/13
Grant Announcements
Thank you to our friends at the Marquette Area Zonta Club for supporting PPWNM's Project Safe and Healthy. This project provides evidence-based sexuality education programming in the Marquette area to high school and college women. Project Safe and Healthy offers knowledge, skills, and support to help prevent unhealthy relationships, unintended pregnancy, and sexually transmitted infections including HIV.

PPWNM is grateful to receive support for its Cervical Cancer Prevention program from the Community Endowment Fund and the Maude and Gorton Milliken Fund of the Petoskey-Harbor Springs Area Community Foundation.

Many thanks to the Charlevoix County Community Foundation for its grant to PPWNM to help educate young people about the struggles and realities of being a teen parent. The grantfunds 10 board games called Ready or Not: The Teen Parenting Game, designed exclusively by PPWNM educators, and costs associated with utlizing the game as part of PPWNM's Project Smart Choices program. Project Smart Choices is a comprehensive, evidence-based sexuality education program for students 12-17 in Charlevoix County. The primary goal of the project is to prevent unintended pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections and unhealthy relationships in the teen population. Thank you to the Charlevoix County Community Foundation for this award.


5/1713
PPWNM Spring 2013 Newsletter
This month's cover story: Planned Parenthood has recently refreshed it's look and logo. Along with this rebranding comes a renewed commitment to our clients and communities with our new tagline: "Care. No matter what."

Also inside:
*Learn about our special fundraising campaign, Standing Tall, and how far we've come toward our goal
*See personal messages of thanks from our grateful clients
*Read about a PPWNM teen leader who is making a statewide impact
*Attend a fundraising event or take an action to help your friends and neighbors stay healthy

Click here for the newsletter


5/12/13
Women's Health Week, May 12-18
National Women's Health Week is the perfect time to schedule your well-woman exam at Planned Parenthood.

More information (If you are uneasy, uncomfortable, or not sure what to expect from your exam, check out the video at the top of the page to get informed and be prepared.)


4/29/13
President Obama Says "Thank you" and "I'm with you" in Address to Planned Parenthood

Watch speech here


4/26/13
Marquette Volunteer Honored with Martha Hatch Award
Marquette local, Kathy Davis, will be honored at Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan's (PPWNM) 7th annual Healthy Families Luncheon to be held at the Masonic Building on Thursday, May 2, 2013, from 11:30 a.m. 1:00 p.m. Davis will receive the Martha Hatch award for her dedication to Planned Parenthood. She has been a volunteer for over 15 years and is a former board member. If you would like to attend the Healthy Families Luncheon fundraiser, please RSVP by April 29 to Jim at (906)-225-6733 ext 2930 or nortonj@ppwnm.org.

Click here for full news release


4/17/13
TEENS ONLY! Earn Money for Eating Pizza! Join us for a GYT House Party.
GYT (Get Yourself Tested) Sex Ed Trivia House Party Tuesday, April 30, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Planned Parenthood, 425 Cherry Street SE, Grand Rapids, MI. Free pizza and snacks, play trivia and games to learn about sexual health, meet new people, and earn $25! Space is limited and you MUST REGISTER TO ATTEND. Email education@ppwnm.org for full details and to register.


4/11/13
PPWNM Annual Report 2012
Our theme for FY2012 is "Grounded and Growing." Look back at our successes, and see where we are heading from here!

Click here for 2012 annual report

Click here for past reports


4/8/13
Muskegon "Talk Early Talk Often" Workshop for Parents April 16
Talk Early Talk Often is a nationally recognized parent workshop aimed at helping parents of middle or high school students talk with their kids about abstinence and sexuality. The workshop is free and includes dinner. The first 20 people to register and complete the workshop will receive a $25 gift card. The event is Tuesday, April 16 at Muskegon Middle School from 5:30 8 p.m. Call (231) 215-3117 or email fergusonm@ppwnm.org.


4/5/13
PPWNM Recognizes GYT (Get Yourself Tested) Month with Special Offer and Teen Pizza Party
The 5th annual GYT campaign kicks off in April (National STD Awareness Month) with initiatives across the country. GYT is a national campaign designed to promote sexual health and address the high rates of sexually transmitted diseases among those under 25. New data from the CDC shows that STDs (also called sexually transmitted infections or STIs) are on the rise in the United States, especially among young people. 

This month at PPWNM health centers, get tested for chlamydia, gonorrhea and HIV for just $50 for all three.

Additionally, PPWNM's education program will hold a free GYT pizza party for people age 14 and up, featuring sex ed trivia and other fun learning activities. Ten $25 gift cards will be raffled off at the end for those who register and attend in full. The GYT party is Tuesday, April 30, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at 425 Cherry St. SE in Grand Rapids. Registration is required. Call (616) 774-7005 or email education@ppwnm.org.

Click here for full GYT news release

Click here for more info on STDs


4/1/13
The Fight Over Medicaid Expansion in Michigan; and the Most Extreme Abortion Ban in the Country
Read about these stories in PPWNM's Public Affairs Pulse, April edition.

Click here for back editions of the Pulse


3/23/13
Celebrating Affordable Care Act Anniversary: We ALL Benefit When Women Have Access to No Co-Pay Birth Control
PPWNM celebrates the three-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which was signed into law by President Obama on March 23, 2010, and is beginning to make a significant health and economic difference in the lives of women across the country who have access to birth control without co-pays for the first time. Approximately 47 million women nationally and more than 1.5 million women in Michigan stand to benefit from the ACA, including a key provision requiring health insurers to cover many women's preventive health care services, including birth control, with no co-pays.

Read full news release


3/13/13
Join us for Lunch, Help Families Stay Healthy
It's that time of year again! Our 2013 Healthy Families premier fundraising events are set for Grand Rapids, Marquette, Petoskey, and Traverse City. Make your plans to join us today! Spend time with like-minded friends, enjoy a complimentary meal and engaging speakers, and learn more about how Planned Parenthood keep families healthy and how you can help too! RSVP is required to attend. Contact donations@ppwnm.org.


3/8/13
Teens and Families: Join Us for a Party!
Pizza party for teens and their families at PPWNM in Grand Rapids on Thursday, March 21, 5:30-7:30 p.m.Event is free, and first 10 families to register and attend the full event receive $25 gift card. Our topic is Sexual Messages in the Media. We'll explore how to wade through the mixed mesages teens see and hear every day. Great teachable/talkable moments for families! Must RSVP to attend at (616) 774-7005 or education@ppwnm.org.


3/8/13
Happy International Women's Day!
March is Women's History Month, and March 8 is International Women's Day. All this month, Planned Parenthood is highlighting our heroes of reproductive rights, violence against women, HIV/AIDS and gender dis crimination.

Read their stories here


3/1/13
Victories for Women's Health!
Read about several recent victories for women's health in PPWNM's Public Affairs Pulse, March edition.

Click here for back editions of the Pulse


2/26/13
Expanded Walk-In Hours in Grand Rapids for Teens Only
Several PPWNM health centers offer walk-in hours you can stop in for services without an appointment. Just added at Irwin/Martin Health Center in Grand Rapids: walk-in hours FOR TEENS ONLY every Tuesday from 3-6pm. Irwin/Martin also offers walk-in hours open to all ages on Mondays from 10:30-4pm. Here is the full list of PPWNM walk-in hours:

Big Rapids:Wednesdays, 10am-3pm
Evenson (Wyoming): Wednesdays, noon-4pm
Irwin/Martin (Grand Rapids): Mondays, 9:00am-4pm (open to all) and Tuesdays, 3-6pm (teens only)
Lemmen (Ionia): Tuesdays, 3-7pm
Muskegon: Walk in clients welcome all hours

PPWNM Health Center locations


2/11/13
Protect Your Sexual Health for Valentine's Day, and Every Day!

With Valentine's Day on February 14, this is the season for couples, and for love! PPWNM urges sexually active individuals to talk to their partners about the importance of using condoms to protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and unintended pregnancy.

"You could give your Valentine chocolate or flowers, but the foundation of a loving and healthy relationship is communication," said Kym Duursma, education specialist with PPWNM. "Negotiating condom use with your partner doesn't have to be a scary conversation when you focus on the message, 'Wear. No matter what. Because I care. No matter what.'"

In February, PPWNM health centers are distributing free Valentine "condom pops" consisting of two condoms, a lollipop, information about safe sex, and links to more information. Just stop in and ask! PPWNM advocates will also distribute the pops at select community venues. In all, more than 6,000 condoms will be distributed as part of the campaign.

And don't forget, you can ALWAYS get three (3) free condoms at any PPWNM health center when you stop in and ask!

Read full story here

Watch videos about correct condom use (English and Spanish) on our YouTube channel.


2/6/13
February 7 is National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.
Planned Parenthood is hosting a Twitter Town Hall on the topic on Thursday, February 7 at 11:30 a.m. (EST) via the hashtag #HIVaware. Please join us.

Get tested for HIV at any PPWNM location and get results in 20 minutes or less!


1/22/13
PPWNM Stands with Women on the 40th Anniversary of Roe v Wade
On the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) stands with women across the country in reinforcing the importance of safe and legal abortion. Despite a woman's constitutional right to make her own personal medical decisions without interference from politicians, access to safe and legal abortion is still at risk.

"As a leading women's health care provider and advocate in Michigan, PPWNM understands that abortion is a deeply personal and often complex decision for a woman to consider if and when she needs it," said PPWNM President/CEO Katherine Humphrey.

Read full news release
Watch video, "You're Not in Her Shoes"
Learn more at roeishereforgood.org


1/18/13
Welcome Blue Care Network and Priority Health!
PPWNM is now accepting Blue Care Network and Priority Health health insurance as an in-network provider. We also accept dozens of other health plans including Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Aetna/Cofinity and Medicaid. No insurance? We'll help make your care affordable for YOU!

Click here to find a PPWNM health center


1/9/13
New Study Shows Rise in HPV-Related Cancers; Screening Key to Prevention
On the heels of a new report showing a rise in HPV-related cancers, PPWNM urges young people to get vaccinated against the sexually transmitted virus known as HPV (human papillomavirus).

"HPV-related cancers are preventable," said PPWNM Nurse Practitioner Shelley Paulsen. "That is what families need to take away from this study. The earlier young men and women are vaccinated against HPV, the better."

The report, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, also points to Pap testing as contributing to substantial declines in cervical cancer in the United States and other developed countries over the past several decades, "Early detection through the use of Pap testing is key to preventing deaths from cervical cancer," said Paulsen.

Click here to learn more


12/28/12
Governor Makes Decisions Regarding Abortion Restrictions in Michigan
Gov. Snyder has signed HB 5711 and vetoed SB 1293. Both measures included new restrictions on abortion in Michigan.

Click here for full story
Click here to read letter of explanation from Gov. Snyder


12/7/12
Tell Your Elected Officials the Attacks Must Stop!
It is time to keep politicians out of women's personal medical desicions! As this year's legislative session comes to a close anti-women's health lawmakers in Michigan are trying to push through dangerous, onerous and outrageous policy initiatives which include efforts to:
*Regulate abortion clinics out of existence.
*Limit abortion access for women in rural areas.
*Prevent private insurance companies from covering any abortion services.
*Give a tax credit for fetuses, but not children.
*Allow providers to deny any health care service they deem objectionable.
Let's stop playing politics with women's health, and start focusing on the real issues facing our state. If it is the goal of the policymakers to reduce the number of abortions in Michigan, preventing unintended pregnancies should be their top priority. Elected officials should spend time on the serious issues impacting our state, not limiting access to reproductive healthcare.

Click here to make your voice heard and tell your elected officials that these attacks must stop!


11/29/12
Ask Me Anything! Retiring Sex Educator to Hold Online Chat About Her 40-Year Career
PPWNM Vice President of Leadership and Development Jan Lunquist is retiring at the end of 2012 after 38 years of service.mLive/Grand Rapids Press has invited Jan to participate ina live, online chattomorrow, Thursday, November 28 at noon. Please join usfor some enlightening online conversation.

Read mLive article and get live chat info


11/15/12
Give the Gift of Planned Parenthood at Alternative Gift Fair in Petoskey
PPWNM is proud to once again be a part of the annual Alternative Gift Fair in Petoskey! The event is Saturday, December 1, 2012, from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at Petoskey United Methodist Church. Donate to Planned Parenthood in someone's honor andreceive a beautiful gift card describing your gift, to giveat the holidays. A way to simplify holiday shopping, support local organizations and truly celebrate the spirit of the season, the Gift Fair has become a defining event in what it means to be part of the Petoskey community.


11/13/12
Free HIV Testing Day December 3 at Big Rapids Health Center
Planned Parenthood Big Rapids Health Center offering free HIV testing on Monday, December 3, 2012, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. This special offer marks World AIDS Day, which falls on Saturday, December 1. Appointments are encouraged. Call (231) 796-8612 for the Big Rapids Health Center.


11/12/12
Jewel in Our Crown, Stepping Down: Leader in Sex Education to Retire After 38 Years!
PPWNM proudly, fondly, and reluctantly bids farewell to Vice President of Leadership and Development Janis A. Lunquist, MA, at the end of 2012, after 38 years of service! Lunquist is widely recognized as an expert in sexuality education, even appearing on The Oprah Winfrey Show, and is responsible for starting and growing the education program at Planned Parenthood, and later, across West and Northern Michigan.

Read full story here


11/6/12
A Victory for Women's Health!
President Obama wins re-election.

News release


10/31/12
Welcome Blue Care Network!
PPWNM is now accepting Blue Care Network health insurance. We also accept dozens of other health plans including Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Aetna/Cofinity and Medicaid. No insurance? We'll help make your care affordable for YOU!

Click here to find a PPWNM health center


10/24/12
Shop 'Til You Drop for PPWNM in Traverse City!
Love to shop? The holidays are coming, and you can support Planned Parenthood while finding those unique and interesting gifts in downtown Traverse City. Merchants give back to their community during this one-day Shop Your Community Day promotion on Saturday, November 10, 2012. Shop at participating downtown Traverse City stores and donate 15% of your purchase price to PPWNM!


10/11/12
National Coming Out Day is Oct. 11, and Ally Week is Oct. 15-19
Every year on National Coming Out Day, we celebrate coming out as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or as an ally.We can, and should, come out as straight supporters of LGBT people.There is power in numbers.Many civil rights movements were successful because people from all walks of life stood shoulder to shoulder in fighting bias.We can use our power this year particularly by voting for people who support the LGBT movement.

The Human Rights Campaign and PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) have worked together to create a guide called Coming Out as a Straight Supporter. The resource is intended to be a welcoming guide for straight supporters to build bridges of understanding when someone they know comes out to them. The following is an excerpt:
We live in a society where prejudice still exists; where discrimination, both legal and illegal, is still far too common; and where even the physical safety of your friend, loved one or acquaintance can be at risk. That's an unfortunate reality and that's part of your friend's or loved one's life. Recognizing these facts and giving your support to that person will not only take your relationship to a higher level it can also help take a small step toward a better and more accepting world, for your loved one and for all of us.

Click here for full guide, Human Rights Campaign, PFLAG

Ally Week, started in 2005 by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight EducationNetwork (GLSEN)will becelebrated October 15-19, 2012, in schools and communities nationwide.During Ally Week,students identify, support and celebrate Allies against anti-LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) language, bullying and harassment in America's schools. Students will encourage their peers and school staff to sign an Ally Pledge which states:

I believe all students, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression, deserve to feel safe and supported. That means I pledge to:
1.Not use anti-LGBT language and slurs;
2.Intervene, if I safely can, in situations where other students are being harassed;
3.Support efforts to end bullying and harassment.

Click here to take the pledge online, GLSEN


10/5/12
PPWNM Urges Women Under 40 to Take Control of Breast Health
News release

Twitter Town Hall on Breast Health to be Held October 9
Tuesday, October 9 at 1p.m.EST, Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA), Dr. Deborah Nucatola, senior director of medical services at PPFA, and Dr. Mark Pearlman, a preeminent breast cancer expert and Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Michigan, willlead a Twitter Town Hall on Breast Health as part of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Ask questions by using the hash tag #betterbreasthealth or mentioning @PPFAQ That's Tuesday, October 9 at 1 p.m. EST.


10/2/12
Text Questions, Get Answers
Planned Parenthood offers a text hotline for teens with questions about pregnancy, birth control, emergency contraception, abortion, and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Text "PPGO" to 774636 (PPINFO) to get answers to your questions.

Check out this YouTube video to learn more, including hours of operation (listed in video description).


10/1/12
October is Let's Talk Month
Teens name parents as their biggest influence when it comes to decisions about sex. Let's Talk Month in October encourages family communication on the sometimes tricky topic of S-E-X. This year, Planned Parenthood teamed with Family Circle magazine to spread the word and offer solid advice, from experts and families alike. We even asked teens and parents including actors Cynthia Nixon, Elizabeth Banks, and Alfre Woodard about the conversations they've had with their families about sex, and share their stories. It's all available in one place; just click the link below.

Click here for our Let's Talk Month webpage of resources for parents and families


9/28/12
Vasectomy Program Helps Fund Procedures in Muskegon County
Public Health Muskegon County's Family Planning Task Force announces the start of a free vasectomy clinic, the only one of its kind in the state. Funding for the first year is being provided through the Peggy Jensen and Gerald Nehra Donor Advised Fund of the Community Foundation for Muskegon County. Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan is the fiduciary agency. Local surgeon, Dr. Dick Kamps is performing the surgeries. This service is limited to low-income men who are residents of Muskegon County. Men who are interested can contact Planned Parenthood's Muskegon Health Center at (231) 724-4415 for more information.

Read full story here


9/26/12
Planned Parenthood Fundraiser Features Passionate Supporters, Grateful Clients
Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) held its annual Healthy Families Luncheon fundraiser at the Hagerty Center in Traverse City on Tuesday, September 25. Supporters packed the ballroom to hear a line-up of speakers that included PPWNM staff, donors, and clients.

Read full story here


9/20/12
PPWNM Publicly Announces Standing Tall Campaign, Renaming of Two Health Centers
PPWNM is publicly announcing the $3 million Standing Tall campaign after securing $2.5 million in lead donations. As part of the campaign, PPWNM is renaming its Ionia Health Center to the Lemmen Health Center in recognition of a lead gift from area philanthropist Harvey Lemmen, originallly of Ionia. PPWNM is also renaming its Traverse City Health Center the Karen Christensen Walker Health Center in honor of a lead donation from Edward C. and Karen C. Walker and family, of Traverse City.

Read full story here


9/14/12
PPWNM Newsletter
It's been a busy summer at PPWNM! As we move into fall, please click the link below to learn more about some interesting developments when it comes to affordable sexualhealth care and quality sexuality education in our community.

PPWNM Connection Fall 2012


9/4/12
Healthy Families Luncheons Coming Up in Muskegon, Traverse City
Healthy Families events are PPWNM's annual fundraisers held in fivecommunities each year. Come learn more about our organization, mingle with like-minded friends, enjoy food and beverages in beautiful settings, and support a worthy cause that keeps 100% of your donation dollars working right here in West and Northern Michigan. The Traverse City luncheonwill be held Tuesday, September 25 and the Muskegon luncheon will be on Thursday, October 25. We woud love for you to attend!

Click here to learn more


8/31/12
PPWNM Co-sponsors Free Health Care Seminar in Muskegon October 2
Join us for an informative, free seminar! This powerful presentation discusses the critical issues facing women's health, including the impact of the Affordable Care Act on women. This seminar is co-sponsored by PPWNM and Michigan Consumers for Healthcare. RSVP IS REQUIRED. Refreshments will be available.

Click here to learn more


8/21/12
Big Changes to Better Serve Our Clients!
PPWNM is launching its new computerized patient medical records system beginning in August 2012! This system will improve quality, efficiency, and access to health care at PPWNM's eight health centers. We will be able to provide a higherqualityof care by easily tracking and monitoring what servicesa patient needs, and when. Improvementsin efficiency include less paperwork, fewer forms to fill out, faster check-ins and check-outs, speedier lab results, and even shorter appointment times. Electronic access to records also means we are better able to coordintecare with our patients' other health providers, pay sources, and pharmacies.

In the short term, we ask our patientsto bear with us as our staff members learn the new Greenway electronic records system over the remainder of 2012. Appointment times may be longer, and even returning patients will need to repeat their health histories as their clinician entersthe informationviacomputer during the visit. In the long run, PPWNM patients can look forward to faster, safer, more convenient service and better communication among all of their health care providers!


8/1/12
Planned Parenhood Celebrates Key Affordable Care Act Milestone for Women's Preventive Care!
News release


7/30/12
Grant Award
Thank you to the Community Foundation for Muskegon County for awarding PPWNM $10,000 to be used for cervical cancer prevention at our Muskegon Health Center, 209 E. Apple Ave., Muskegon (inside Public Health-Muskegon County). If you are in need of sexual health services in Muskegon, including a Pap test, please call our office at (231) 724-4415.


7/11/12
PPWNM Annual Report
FY2011


7/5/12
PPWNM Co-sponsors Free Health Care Seminars July 18-19
Join us for one of these informative, powerful presentations discussing the critical issues facing women's health, including the impact of the Affordable Care Act on women. Events are being held in Houghton, Marquette,and Traverse City.

Click here to learn more


6/28/12
Planned Parenthood Statement on Affordable Care Act Supreme Court Ruling

Click here


6/25/12
Petoskey Residents Support Planned Parenthood
Emmet and Charlevoix area residents gathered together at Harris Gardens on the lawn of North Central Michigan College to hear impactful speakers express why supporting Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) is more critical than ever. Attendance at the annual Healthy Families Benefit on June 14, 2012, doubled from last year to 200 guests and raised nearly $35,000 dollars for reproductive health care for women and men.

Nationally renowned speaker, illustrator and actor, Tami Evans, engaged the audience with a burst of humorous reflections and an analogy of why sex education is so critical.

"Our bodies are like a Bugati Veyron 16.4 - boasting a maximum speed of more than 248 miles per hour - full of potential, beauty and unlimited speed," said Evans. "What if no one had bothered to teach us how to safely drive a car, and then put us behind the wheel of a Bugatti Veyron?"

Click here to read more


6/6/12
Planned Parenthood Founder Honored at Fundraising Event
Results are in from Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan's (PPWNM) recent fundraising luncheon in Marquette. The Healthy Families Luncheon 2012, held May 3 at the Masonic Building, brought out 117 supporters who raised nearly $14,000.

The late Dr. Wallace Pearson Sr. was honored at the event for tireless devotion to Planned Parenthood. Dr. Pearson was instrumental in bringing the first Planned Parenthood health center to Marquette, and served as the first medical director, a position he voluntarily held for 20 years. Pearson died October 15, 2011, at age 80.

Also at the luncheon, PPWNM President/CEO Kathy Humphrey acknowledged and thanked Zonta Club of Marquette Area for awarding a $750 grant to PPWNM's Project Safe and Healthy. Project Safe and Healthy will provide evidence-based sexuality education programming for young women in the Marquette area.

Click here to read more


5/31/12
Free HIV Testing Week at PPWNM, June 25-29, 2012
Wednesday, June 27, 2012 is National HIV Testing Day (NHTD). NHTD is an annual campaign coordinated by the National Association of People with AIDS to encourage people of all ages to "Take the Test, Take Control." Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) health centers are participating by offering free HIV testing by appointment the week of June 25-29, 2012, during regular business hours. PPWNM operates eight health centers in a 52-county region of Michigan. Call the health center nearest you to make an appointment today.


5/30/12
Grant Award
Thanks so much to Three Generations Circle of Women Givers in Traverse City for funding our Ready or Not Project! The Project aims to reduce unintended and too early pregnancy, through the use of PPWNM's Ready or Not teen parenting game. Looking forward to receiving our award at Three Generations' fundraiser Friday, June 1, with special guest Sen. Debbie Stabenow!


5/29/12
S
urvey 2012: Teens Say Parents Most Influence Their Decisions About Sex
May is Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month and The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy has released a new survey of both teens and adults on the topic. Teens say parents most influence their decisions about sex and 87 percent say it would be much easier for them to postpone sex and avoid teen pregnancy if they were able to have more open, honest conversations about these topics with their parents. Read full survey and learn more about parent-child communication on the topic of sex on our For Parents page.


5/17/12
Growing Support for Comprehensive Sex Ed and an End to Abstinence-Only Programs
On May 17, 2012, the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) passed a resolution in support of comprehensive sex education. The resolution expresses strong support for current initiativesand support for expanding federal programs and funding for comprehensive sex education and HIV prevention for youth, building on the existing body of evidence. In addition, the resolution calls for the elimination of federal funding for abstinence-only-until-marriage programs as well as for no federal funding to be used for programs that withhold information, are medically inaccurate or have been shown to be ineffective, promote gender stereotypes, or ignore or stigmatize LGBT young people, etc. Of note, the resolution also requests that HHS' review their list of evidence-based programs with these content standards in mind. Some of the language also reflects and is pulled from the Sense of Congress in the Real Education for Healthy Youth Act in order to support those efforts.


5/1/12
STD Special Offer Becomes Standard
PPWNM thanks everyone who followed our Best Kept Secrets campaign over the past few months, shared information, or accessed our special offers for free birth control or $50 STD testing at one of our eight health centers. Due to the response to this campaign and the needs in the communities that we serve, we are ending our campaign withone final Best Kept Secret: our $50 STD testing package is now a standard offer at PPWNM! New or current clients can receive chlamydia, gonorrhea, and HIV screening for just $50 for all three tests, any time during regular business hours at any PPWNM location. Call ahead for an appointment or take advantage of walk-in hours at several of our locations. The entire process takes just 1-1 hours.

Learn more: Best Kept Secrets, STD special offer, PPWNM health centers


4/1/12
April is GYT month
April is National STD Awareness Month and, since 2009, GYT Month! GYT (Get Yourself Talking, Get Yourself Tested) encourages young people to talk with health care providers and partners about getting tested for STDs. According to the CDC, approximately half of the estimated 19 million STDs occurring in the U.S. each year are among people age 25 and younger.

During April Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan (PPWNM) is offering a discounted STD testing package in support of GYT. New or current patientscan get tested for chlamydia, gonorrhea, and HIV all three tests for just $50 through April 30.

Click here to learn more


3/29/12
PPWNM Healthy Families Fundraisers 2012
Healthy Families events are PPWNM's annual fundraisers held in five communities each year. Come learn more about our organization, mingle with like-minded friends, enjoy food and beverages in beautiful settings, and support a worthy cause that keeps 100% of your donation dollars working right here in West and Northern Michigan. We woud love for you to attend! Click here to learn more.


3/16/12
Planned Parenthood Website Ranks Number 1 for Teens!
The journal Clinical Pediatrics just published a study evaluating the different sexual health information websites for adolescents, and ranked plannedparenthood.org number one! They evaluated almost 30 such websites on four criteria: "authority" (i.e., legitimacy, credentialing, etc.), "interactivity," "usability," and "educational content." The citation is Whitley, L. B., Mello, J. Hunt, O., and Brown, L. K. (2012). "A Review of Sexual Health Web Sites for Adolescents," Clinical Pediatrics: 51(3): 209-213.


3/9/12
Free Dinner Workshop for Parents on March 27:
The first 20 people who register and complete the workshop will receive a $25 gift Card!
PPWNM is bringing the nationally recognized Talk Early Talk Often workshop to Muskegon during March, which is Parenting Awareness Month. Talk Early & Talk Often is aimed at helping parents of middle and high school youth talk with their children about abstinence and sexuality. The workshop helps parents recognize and use opportunities to open the door for conversation, listen and respond with greater confidence and skill and to feel comfortable seeking outside sources of information.

The workshop is free of charge,a light dinner will be served, and parents will receive take-home materials. Parents only, please!

The Muskegon workshop is on Tuesday, March 27, at the Muskegon High School cafeteria from 5-7:30 p.m.

Space is limited so please call early to reserve a spot by e-mailing education@ppwnm.org or calling (616) 774-7005.


2/28/12
Ready or Not: The Teen Parenting Game Now on Sale
PPWNM proudly presents Ready or Not: The Teen Parenting Game. This board game for 4-8 players, ages 12 and up, takes players on a month-long journeyin the life of a teen parent. Players make real-life decisions about how to spend their limited incomes, juggle work and school, deal with bad landlords, and, of course, care for their newborn infant (sometimes, two!). A great learning tool for classrooms, youth programs, and families!


1/19/12
Best Kept Secrets revealed!
Psst...Pass it on! Best Kept Secrets revealed weekly - about your sexual health, and how to stay healthy and safe in 2012. For too many people, sexual health remains a secret: something talked about in hushed tones, rumors passed along through word-of-mouth. Our Best Kept Secrets campaign is designed to shred the myths and spread reliable, useful information. Psst...Pass it on!


1/16/12
Two Special Offers from PPWNM
We are kicking off the new year with two special offers from PPWNM:STD testing package for just $50, and one month free birth control. These offers are good through April 30, 2012. We are here - for you, your loved ones, neighbors, and friends - providing affordable services and professional, private care. Check us out with two special offers in 2012!

Media Inquiries: Contact the PPWNM Director of Communications at (616) 774-7005 or e-mail publicrelations@ppwnm.org.

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