Courtney Swarms has been volunteering with Planned Parenthood in Springfield for four months and has done so much in that short time! Courtney is always willing and ready to help with whatever we need. She is always excited and committed to the work. As a true advocate for reproductive rights, Courtney has attended Lobby Days in Jefferson City, worked at our PRIDE table, shown up for direct action at the Capitol, and is a regular phone bank volunteer. Courtney makes advocating for reproductive rights a priority and her work is essential to our movement in Springfield.
Why is it important to you to volunteer for Planned Parenthood?
It is important for me to volunteer at Planned Parenthood because I am a firm believer in the old saying, "be the change you want to see in the world." I think everyone can agree that the current political climate has been a little more than just hostile toward women's reproductive rights and women's rights in general. Planned Parenthood has always been at the forefront fighting for women's health and reproductive rights, so when making the decision to volunteer I knew I could do the most good by joining them. In addition, the care that Planned Parenthood gives to both women and men in their health clinics is not only important, it is life saving for many; and I am extremely honored to be a part of the fight to keep those doors open.
What is your favorite volunteer experience with Planned Parenthood?
I have so many great experiences volunteering with Planned Parenthood, from trips to the capitol in Jefferson City to phone banking for endorsed candidates, picking just one is hard. However, I would have to say that the Power of Pink convention in Detroit stands out for me. It was an amazing weekend of learning with workshops and speakers, plus I also got to meet Cecile Richards for the first time, an experience I will never forget!
What else would you like to share about volunteering?
Volunteers are the individuals who make change. It has been proven time and time again that phone banking and canvassing are an extremely effective way of making the people's voices heard, fact is the majority of those calls and knocks are being made by volunteers. So anyone who wants to see/make change happen, and gain some great friends along the way, I would highly recommend becoming a volunteer with Planned Parenthood organizations. It is extremely fun and rewarding.
Finally, just for fun, what is your favorite food?
Growing up in an Italian family, I am going to have to say pasta of really any kind.
Christen Moore is a Volunteer Organizer with Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri.