Children by Choice is funded by the Queensland Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services, to deliver counselling and community education on pregnancy options to Queenslanders. However, some of our most important activities are not covered by this funding, and run entirely on donations. Donating to these initiatives is a very important way of showing your support for the our work.
Queensland Abortion Fund
Abortion provided through professional clinicians and GPs in Queensland is very safe but can have high out-of-pocket costs attached, and public hospitals rarely offer abortion procedures even for women in exacerbating circumstances. Women on small fixed incomes are finding it increasingly difficult to come up with the funds to pay for a procedure. Over half of contacts to our counselling team are about financial assistance for abortion, and many women have to source funds from several different people or services to come up with the amount they need.
We have been providing financial assistance since 2000 for disadvantaged women to help them access abortion when that is what they want. This program now includes a No Interest Loan scheme and free or discounted long acting reversible contraception, but for some women, this is not enough. Our Queensland Abortion Fund provides money to women facing extreme disavantage, that they do not have to repay. Many of the women who need this help are victims of domestic and/or sexual violence. Many have little or no income, or access to family finances.
Women in exacerbating circumstances are prioritised for assistance from this money, and are generally women who have no other options left for support. Funds provided for abortion access through the Queensland Abortion Fund are paid directly to abortion providers, not to clients themselves.
We also continue to work with clients in helping them source financial assistance through a variety of different channels, and with other agencies in helping improve their own capacity to support their clients in negotiating access to services. If all options have failed, we provide or find whatever funds we can to support an individual woman’s access to a procedure. In these situations, our Queensland Abortion Fund is our safety net. We are in constant need of donations to ensure this safety net remains in place for some of Queensland's most vulnerable women.
Women need to be able to make their own private decision based on good information and the availability of safe and affordable services. They are real people carefully considering their choices, and their choices shouldn't be affected by their wallets. You can make a tax deductible donation through givenow to help make their choice real, or sign up there to become a regular giver. A monthly donation of as little as $10 can help us make the system work better for Queensland women, and you can nominate any amount you choose. 100% of your donations go to direct client assistance.
Contraception and carbon: Our voluntary carbon offset program
Do you want to offset your carbon emissions? Every year, every Australian will emit an average of 16 tonnes of Greenhouse Gasses. Australia's per capita carbon emissions are amongst the highest in the world. One of the most cost effective methods of reducing carbon emissions is investment in family planning. Controlling population growth is arguably one of the most effective and untapped strategies to achieve carbon reduction. And there is an unmet need, right here, right now in Australia.
Children by Choice has been providing unplanned pregnancy counselling in Queensland since 1972. We work with up to 2000 women every year who experience unplanned pregnancy. It is estimated that in Australia half of all pregnancies are unplanned. To avoid unplanned pregnancy, a woman needs to manage contraception perfectly across 400 ovulations in her lifetime. This is a difficult task for any woman, but can be completely out of reach for women experiencing violence, poverty and disadvantage.
The most reliable and effective contraceptives available for women are Long Acting Reversible Contraceptives. Yet, for many disadvantaged women, the cost of these methods is prohibitive. You can help give disadvantaged women the chance to choose an effective contraception method by donating to our contraception and carbon appeal through givenow. $200 dollars will offset one year of emissions for the average Australian.
Decriminalising abortion has been a key objective of Children by Choice since we were established in 1972. In May 2016, a new campaign on this issue was launched by Pro Choice Queensland after Independent MP for Cairns, Rob Pyne, introduced a Private Member's Bill to Queensland Parliament to remove abortion from our 1899 Criminal Code. Pro Choice Queensland is a collective of organisations and individuals from across the state, and Children by Choice is a proud supporter of their 'It's not 1899: abortion should not be a crime' campaign. Funds for this campaign are being collected through givenow, auspiced by us here at Children by Choice. All funds raised go to the campaign and help pay pay for things like events, resources, printing, and keeping the Pro Choice Queensland website online.