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December Newsletter: Give the Gift of Choice this Christmas

Published on

You can give the gift of choice this Christmas

  • After Tiller screening
  • Ending the silence on abortion in Northern Ireland
  • Women we’ve helped

How you can give the gift of choice this Christmas

This time of year is when many people look at the good fortune in their lives and think about how they can help others. At ASN, this is the start of the busiest time of year. We have just finished yet another record-breaking month, receiving calls and emails from 53 different women and families – you can read some of their stories below. These women are facing the £400-£2000 cost of terminating an unwanted pregnancy at a time when the cost of flights are ludicrously high, and they are already trying to eke out extra pennies for Christmas presents for their kids:

“With Christmas coming money is incredibly tight. We can barely afford the kids we have but also can’t afford to have an abortion to end this pregnancy. Please help us.”
– Mother of three

Last year, ASN was able to help women and their families with additional funding. With your help, we are hoping to be able to provide the same level of assistance this year.  Some women need as little as £20; some women need much, much more. There are several ways you can help:

  • Donate £5 online here
  • If you’re in the UK, you can also donate by text – just text ASNY35 £5 to 70070
  • If your bank account is running low – and we know the feeling! – you can ask friends and family to donate to ASN as their gift to you! Just send them this link here (thanks to the Agender Society‘s Choice for Xmas event).

Read on for more about how your donations today could help a woman who calls us tomorrow.

After Tiller screening

Thank you so much to everyone who came out to Shoreditch to watch our screening of After Tiller on 19 November. After expenses we raised £640 for Abortion Support Network and Education for Choice – thank you! Thanks also to Jane Fisher, director of Antenatal Results and Choices, for speaking on the short panel afterwards, and to everyone who baked and bought the delicious cakes.

Ending the Silence on Abortion in Northern Ireland

ASN had the privilege of taking part of a 16-day campaign to extend the 1967 Abortion Act to Northern Ireland. The project included a radio documentary (listen here) featuring members of Alliance for Choice as well as the amazing Ann Rossiter (buy her awesome book here!) as well as a petition to Extend the 1967 Act (sign here!), a Twitter campaign (#16 Days and #Extend1967) and a series of 16 postcards featuring 16 reasons to support abortion in Northern Ireland taken from the radio programme. The 16 days are over, but the materials remain, and it’s not too late to take part, sign the petition, or circulate via social media. More information can be found here or you can follow Alliance for Choice on Facebook or Twitter.

Women We’ve Helped This Month

In November, ASN heard from 53 women, couples and families. Some we were able to help by directing them to Women on Web; some we could help with smaller grants; others needed closer to £1000. Every £1, $1 and €1 you donate matters to women like these:

  • We heard from three women pregnant as result of rape, including one 17-year-old who was contemplating suicide, and a refugee who was raped and tortured by prison guards before escaping to Ireland, but who couldn’t obtain a visa to travel.
  • Two young couples struggling with unplanned pregnancy in secret: one couple both live with their parents and needed to communicate via email because they were worried about being overheard. Another young couple, a 15-year-old girl and her 16-year-old boyfriend, were both too terrified to tell anyone in their lives about the pregnancy, or go to a local family planning clinic lest they be seen by someone they know.
  • “I have gotton pregnant i dont want to tell anyone…i cant please can u help me please i dont know what to do am happy with my daughter but i cant have another i just cant do it”
  • Four of the women we helped this month who were in or escaping from abusive relationships.  One woman found out she was pregnant after being hospitalised; and though she thought she was about seven weeks pregnant, in fact she was more than 20 weeks.This woman was completely alone in the world with no one to turn to for help, or even to tell about the pregnancy. Thanks to donations from supporters like you, ASN was able to help with a grant of £983 towards the cost of procedure and travel, as well as to provide a home for her to stay in.

Can you give the gift of choice for women like them today? Our average grants are £100-£200, and every £1, $1 or €1 adds up; your £5, £10, or £20 could make all the difference to one family’s Christmas this year.

Thank you again for all your support. Without you, we wouldn’t have been able to provide financial assistance, accommodation and confidential, non-judgemental information to many women who have contacted us for support. We hope you can support us with a donation today.

We thank these women and men for allowing us to share their stories. Please note that all monies are written as GBP regardless of where clients are resident, and that “Ireland” can refer to North Ireland or the Republic of Ireland.