What NYAAF Has Been Up To This Past Year

We want to take a moment to share what NYAAF has been up to over the past year since we began a process of transformation. While we’ve continued our essential work of funding abortions, NYAAF has been quieter this year as we transition to become a smaller, more collectively-run, and women-of-color-led body.

Spurred by a long overdue internal reckoning with our disconnect from caller experience, NYAAF embarked on a transformation period in the spring of last year. While we continued to operate our helpline and fund abortions, we paused on other work — including external communications, recruiting new volunteers or board members, new advocacy campaigns, and hosting events unrelated to the call line. 

We used this period as an opportunity to stop cycles of harm by investing in community building, restorative justice, values alignment, strategic planning, organizational restructuring, and the transfer of leadership to existing board members who more closely represent our callers. We approach this work humbly, with a shared commitment to growth. and recognition that there is still so much work to be done to better represent and serve the holistic needs of our callers and their communities, as well as to better be in line with our broader movement of abortion funds and reproductive justice organizers. Through our ongoing strategic planning, we hope to reimagine and rebuild NYAAF.

During this period we completed the following:

  • Relationship and trust building – meeting up in person for the first times since the beginning of the pandemic.
  • Restorative justice circles.
  • Co-authoring a harm response plan.
  • Enlisting a strategic planning consultant and initiating a strategic planning process, including a multi-day retreat.
  • Restructuring our leadership structure to be more collaborative and building trust as a smaller, multiracial group.
  • Changing our funding protocols to become more caller-centric — eliminating unnecessary screening questions and embodying deeper trust in callers.
  • Distributing the most funds in our history — more than $720,000 pledged in the past year to around one thousand callers. During this time, we were proud to meet 100% of caller need.

While necessary, this transformation period has not been easy. We have gone from more than 20 active board members to now only 6  — all volunteers, all with day jobs and other commitments. Additional harm has been done as we’ve struggled together to confront how anti-Blackness and abortion stigma show up in our work and the abortion access landscape, and we have had to address that as it has emerged. We know that this work requires ongoing dedication, and we are committed to doing it together. 

Further, the state of abortion access across the nation has continued to shift. Caller need has grown as our lines have gotten busier and our pledges have gotten larger. But our relationship-centered work gives us the foundation to nimbly respond to this inflection point for our movement.

Because we have invested in building a stronger organization and building relationships with one another, we are in a stronger position to face the challenges of this moment. Our movement’s strength depends on a foundation of right relationship. 

Questions? Feedback? We’re here to be in conversation with you. We hope to share more with you about our transformation work soon, including during our in-person Fund-a-Thon celebration at Cafe Erzulie in Brooklyn on Sunday, May 22. RSVP here. We deeply value this community and look forward to filling the backyard with fellow activists and supporters! Please join and spread the word.

Yours in partnership,The NYAAF Board: Ambika, Chelsea, Julia, Karla, Maddy, Puja

Fund-a-Thon is on for 2022! 

Spring is abortion funding season across the National Network of Abortion Funds, and NYAAF is on our way to hitting our goal of $100,000 raised by peer-to-peer grassroots funders like you! There is still time to create a fundraising page and engage your friends, family, and community in conversations about the important work of abortion funding.

To fundraise with us, register online here! You can create a new team (teams can totally have just one person on them) or join an existing one. Your supporters can use the secure website to make donations to NYAAF. Fund-a-Thon goes through the end of May, so sign up now!

Fund-a-Thon is the main way NYAAF raises the money we need to fund ever caller who needs our help to cover the cost of their abortion. And further, by participating in Fund-a-Thon and talking to your loved ones about why abortion access matters, you not only raise the funds needed for abortion in your own community, but are also  breaking down abortion stigma. If you’re not able to make a page and fundraise yourself, you can make a direct donation to NYAAF’s Fund-a-Thon campaign here.

We are also unbelievably excited that this year we are having an in-person Fund-a-Thon event for the first time in three years!

We invite you to join us at Cafe Erzulie in Brooklyn on Sunday May 22nd from 2-5 pm for an open bar, small bites, good music, and an amazing community of dedicated supporters and activists. Fund-a-Thon participants will get in free; others will be encouraged to make a $15 donation. (We will be checking vaccine cards at the entrance). We hope to see you there! Please RSVP here.

Despite growing attacks on abortion access, we are forging ahead with our essential work and taking time to celebrate the joy of abortion funding. Your support and efforts ensure that NYAAF can continue to provide abortion funding to every person who contacts us seeking care. 

Sign up to fundraise, and we’ll see you on the 22nd!

Supporting Abortion Access in New York and Beyond

The New York Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF) supports anyone who needs assistance paying for an abortion in New York State, or for New Yorkers seeking care elsewhere. The New York Abortion Access Fund believes that every person should be able to determine their own reproductive destiny and have access to the resources, rights, and respect to be able to do so. We believe that access to affordable abortion care is a critical component of full-spectrum healthcare services. 

We are an all-volunteer, 501(c)(3) organization, and we rely on our community to provide funding to our callers. You can make a donation to NYAAF through our website by clicking here.

We are a member of the National Network of Abortion Funds, a network of abortion funds across the country. If you want to support Texans seeking abortion, we suggest you donate directly to abortion funds in Texas. A list of those funds–and a link to donate to them all at once–is available here.

If you need assistance paying for an abortion, please call our helpline at 212-252-4757 and leave a voicemail. Someone will get back to you within 24 hours.

Thank you for your support!

NYAAF raised over $47,000 through Fund-a-Thon!

Thanks to our entire community NYAAF raised over $47,000 for abortion access through this year’s Fund-a-Thon! While we didn’t quite make our goal of $60,000, we have so much to celebrate. Every dollar raised will go directly to building power and funding abortion in New York, ensuring that NYAAF can serve every person who calls our helpline.

We participate in Fund-a-Thon every year because we believe that funding abortion is an act of community care. NYAAF is able to be there for callers year in and year out because our community is there.

We want to extend a special thanks to the Rochester and SyracuseDSA chapters for joining powers to host a trivia party for NYAAF, and the SuffolkDSA for hosting a raffle for abortion access.

Also! If you still want to make a gift to Fund-a-Thon it’s not too late! You can make a donation here and note in the comments that it’s for Fund-a-Thon.

Thank you!

Support Efforts Upstate to Expose CPCs

by Lauren Ashley deLancey, ROCDSA Socialist Feminist Collective

The Socialist Feminist Collective is a group of Rochester, NY Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) members organizing around reproductive freedom, economic justice and other feminist issues that especially impact the working class and the poor. We’re proud to have organized several Bowl-A-Thons with NYAAF and are always happy to support an abortion fund that does such incredible work in the state. 

Inspired by our socialist feminist comrades in Pittsburgh DSA, we spent much of 2020 preparing to launch a campaign against Crisis Pregnancy Centers (CPCs), sometimes called Pregnancy Resource Centers, in Rochester.

Our goal is to expose CPCs for what they are: fake abortion clinics with an agenda that don’t provide the legitimate reproductive health care that all people deserve. We’re giving the Rochester community the tools to recognize when they’re interacting with a CPC and the resources they’ll need to visit abortion clinics and legitimate reproductive health care providers instead. And as socialists, it is important to us to provide resources to poor pregnant people, including information about how to access abortion funding in Rochester through our friends at NYAAF and where to go for material aid like food, clothing, and baby supplies. 

We’re kicking off this campaign in the new year with a social media push to collect stories about experiences and the release of our new printed brochure about CPCs. If you are a person who sought reproductive healthcare but ended up at a CPC, tell your story! You can submit anonymously through this form, and we may use your experiences on social media or in printed materials. 

Want to learn more? Follow us at @rocsocfem on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, and email us with questions, concerns, or ideas at rocsocfem@gmail.com.

Thank you, you blew us away!

Dear friend,

When we called on our community to show up for Giving Tuesday, you astounded us with an inspiring display of power.

With you, we nearly doubled our Giving Tuesday goal of $6,000, with 104 supporters bringing in $11,345! And 27 of you took to social media to mobilize your own communities to donate and understand the realities of abortion access, including  how abortion funding  is linked to racial justice, wealth redistribution, and mutual aid.

We believe that everything we do to create a world without barriers to abortion is only ever possible through community. That’s why our leadership is collectively-run and non-hierarchical. That’s why the bulk of our funding comes from individuals like you, not big foundations and corporations. You’ve been a part of facilitating abundance and support for people seeking abortions in a system that was designed to fail them.

We are always grateful for the network of people in New York and beyond who make this work possible, and we’re particularly inspired today. Thank you for your powerful show of love and community support. Funding abortion is an act of care. Thank you for caring and showing up for people seeking abortion care. 

In community,
The NYAAF Board of Directors

P.S. Did you miss us on Giving Tuesday? Become a monthly supporter or make a one-time gift here

NYAAF Statement on the Confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 29, 2020

Media contacts:
NYAAF Communications Co-Managers
May Sifuentes
may@nyaaf.org

Jenna McDavid
jenna@nyaaf.org

Ashwin
ashwin@nyaaf.org

New York, NY—On October 26th, Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed to the Supreme Court by the United States Senate in a highly partisan 52-48 vote. NYAAF joins in the collective outpouring of heartbreak and anger around this confirmation, which occurred just eight days before the 2020 election. To date, over 75 million Americans have already cast their ballots by mail or voted early at an in-person polling location. 

In her time as a judge and law professor, Justice Barrett has signaled her unwillingness to support the right of a person to seek an abortion, and her record as a judge demonstrates her desire to limit reproductive rights to the fullest extent possible. Furthermore, Justice Barrett has opposed the Affordable Care Act, defended the dissenters in Obergefell v. Hodges, the landmark Supreme Court ruling which made marriage equality the law of the land, and suggested that Title IX does not apply to transgender individuals. The lifetime appointment of Justice Barrett to the Supreme Court threatens our civil rights for a generation, and it does not reflect the will of the people.

As an abortion fund, we know that the basic legal right to an abortion is the floor, not the ceiling. Even with legal protections for abortion at the federal level, far too many people face insurmountable barriers to care. We are resolute in our commitment to building a world where all people have the resources they need to build the families they want and care for these families. Our strength comes from our commitment to each other and this vision — not the courts or the White House. Justice Barrett’s confirmation, and the stacking of local courts with anti-abortion judges, will make this work incredibly challenging but we will root ourselves in the power of our community and fight hard. 

While we may be feeling grief, anxiety, and rage around this confirmation, we do not feel hopeless. Abortion funds are uniquely primed for this moment. NYAAF needs your partnership to continue responding to callers’ needs during these changing times. Please advance abortion access by making a generous gift to NYAAF today. You can also deepen your relationship to abortion access work in New York by becoming a volunteer.

NYAAF’s Statement Regarding The Nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 13, 2020

Media contacts:
NYAAF Communications Co-Managers
May Sifuentes
may@nyaaf.org

Jenna McDavid
jenna@nyaaf.org

Ashwin
ashwin@nyaaf.org

New York, NY—The New York Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF) expresses its condolences to the family and loved ones of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who passed away on September 18, 2020. Justice Ginsburg took an unwavering approach towards advancing reproductive freedom, civil rights, voter protections, immigration, and healthcare, among so many of the issues that are vital to our survival. Our community continues to mourn her passing. 

This week marked the beginning of Senate confirmation hearings to seat Judge Amy Coney Barrett in Justice Ginsburg’s Supreme Court vacancy. In her time as a judge and law professor, Judge Barrett has signaled her unwillingness to support the right of a person to seek an abortion, and her record as a judge demonstrates her desire to limit reproductive rights to the fullest extent possible. Furthermore, Judge Barrett has opposed the Affordable Care Act, which provides much-needed health care; has defended the dissenters in Obergefell v. Hodges, the landmark Supreme Court ruling which made marriage equality the law of the land; and has suggested that Title IX does not apply to transgender individuals. 

Although NYAAF is not affiliated with any candidate or political party, we believe that as early voting is already underway, it is unjust and hypocritical for the Senate to try to fill this seat while many have already begun casting their ballots. We urge NYAAF supporters to call their Senators TODAY to oppose the confirmation of Judge Barrett. Dial 202-224-3121 to be connected to the Capitol Switchboard. Urge your Senators to respect the will of the people and wait until after Election Day to nominate a new justice to the Supreme Court. This toolkit from Planned Parenthood Action Fund features talking points and other ways to connect with your elected officials.

No matter what happens in the months to come, abortion funds will continue to be an important resource. Abortion funds are uniquely primed for this moment and need your partnership to continue responding to callers’ needs during these changing times. You can advance abortion access by making a generous gift to NYAAF today. You can also deepen your relationship to abortion access work in New York by becoming a volunteer

The future of the Supreme Court and access to reproductive health care is uncertain, but NYAAF remains committed to protecting abortion access for all. 

Support your local abortion fund and become a NYAAF case manager!

The New York Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF) is excited to announce we will be holding a virtual two-day case manager training on Saturday, October 24 and Sunday, October 25 from 12-3 pm

NYAAF supports anyone who is unable to pay fully for an abortion and is living in or traveling to New York State by providing financial assistance and connections to other resources. Intake case managers are dedicated volunteers who help manage our intake helpline and work directly with our clients to ensure they have the funds they need. This is a great opportunity to be trained in abortion fund case management, join a community of other committed volunteers, and learn about the abortion funding and clinic landscape in New York State firsthand.  

If you are interested in becoming a case manager and are available for the full training on both days, sign up here by October 7. Please note that space is limited and filling out this form does not guarantee a spot at the training. We will follow up confirming your spot within a week of the form closing.

We especially encourage BIPOC, people who have had an abortion, former clients of NYAAF, members of the LGBTQ+ community, bilingual Spanish-speakers, and New York residents living outside of New York City to sign up.

Feel free to reach out to info@nyaaf.org if you have any questions! 

In solidarity,

Karla, Anna, and Chelsea
Intake Team 
New York Abortion Access Fund