BENEFITING: Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc.
In which I attempt to raise money for Planned Parenthood by running, because Susan G. Komen can't trademark that. (Even if they'd like to.)
So here’s the thing. The Susan G. Komen foundation has agreed to restore the $680,000 in grant money it gave to Planned Parenthood to fund breast health exams, and will allow Planned Parenthood to continue to apply for grants (note that they are not necessarily going to give them the grants, just that they’ll let them apply for them). And that’s pretty swell. Also, while Susan G. Komen was holding its breath and stamping its feet and refusing to back down, Planned Parenthood managed to raise $650,000 to help replace the funds that would have been lost due to shameless political pandering. Which, again, is fantastic. Awesome. Jolly good!
However. Last year, Planned Parenthood lost$80 million in government funds, due to budget cuts at the state level that have forced clinic closures and reductions in services. Kansas, North Carolina, Indiana, and Wisconsin have all voted to defund Planned Parenthood. And if Republicans in the House and Senate have their way, an additional $487 million in federal funding will be lost.
That’s a lot of scratch. And yet it’s not getting half the media attention that Susan G. Komen got. Which means that while people were scrambling to show support for Planned Parenthood before they could lose that $680,000, a lot fewer people are investing their time and energy in replacing the$80 million that’s been cut for good.
Now, I don’t have $80 million. Some months, I can barely make rent. But what I do have are two perfectly serviceable legs that just love to go for runs. And as the Komen Foundation itself has proven, over and over again, running is a really excellent way to raise money. So this is what I would like to do:
During the month of March (because March, in the United States, has been designated as Women’s History Month), I pledge to run at least 75 miles (hopefully closer to 100, maybe 125 if I’m feeling ambitious.) In return, I would like those of you who are interested in supporting Planned Parenthood and have the money to spare to make a donation to Planned Parenthood Federation of America via Crowdrise (so I know how much I've raised.)
This can be a one-time donation, as little or as much as you feel like. If you’re interested in more of a pledge-per-mile kind of a deal, you can wait until the end of the month to see what my final mileage is — I’ll be using RunKeeper to log my miles, so you can keep track of how far I’m running and how often I head out and what streets I run on (if you feel like being creepy). Ideally, there will also be progress reports via video, but I have to figure out my webcam first, so don’t bank on that just yet. My goal is $1,000 as of right now; I figured that was a high enough total that I’d be unlikely to hit it, but you never know. I could be wrong. You could prove me wrong. If you wanted to.
I mean, I’m just saying.
And if you ain't got money, but you still want to help out, feel free to join my team! Nag your friends! Log some miles! Or do something else -- do whatever makes sense to you, but do something. But help Planned Parenthood, or it won't be around to help you.