Drinks, dancing and demand for abortion access


Julian Mendoza

Members of the Women’s Health Specialist pose together for a group photo.

Community members gathered at the Women’s Health Specialists clinic Friday night to commemorate the 47th anniversary of landmark Supreme Court Case, Roe v. Wade. 

This is an annual benefit and is open to the public as a celebratory occasion for a woman’s right to choose. 

“I think it’s important to recognize abortion access for everyone. We want to create an environment where someone could walk up to the window and be able to have access to abortions without a lot of hoops to jump through,” clinic coordinator Vanessa Aragon said, “Reproductive health and sexual health is a human right.” 

Attended by Women’s Health Specialists staff, as well as friends and veterans of its programs, activities focused on fundraising to support the clinic and extend gratitude for the community’s support. The benefit featured a silent auction using donations from many local businesses, an open wine bar, complimentary snacks and an awards ceremony. After the mixer portion of the night concluded, attendees headed to The Maltese for a night of dancing. 

In regard to the current political climate surrounding Roe v. Wade, clinic manager Nel Adams noted that while she is not one for making political arguments, she has first-hand experience of the reality of women’s reproductive health.

“I’m on the front lines doing the work and seeing the clients, and knowing their struggles and the things that are creating barriers to them every day,” Adams said. 

Women’s Health Specialists has served the Chico community for over 40 years and was founded by Dido Hasper in 1975. Acting as a comprehensive women’s health center, Women’s Health Specialists offers different services for reproductive and overall health. 

“I think it’s important to the Chico community and people in general to hear that there’s other reproductive health facilities that offer great services comparable to Planned Parenthood,” member of the clinic’s intake office, Rosalina Acevedo-Golden said, “It’s important for people to find choices and places that they feel comfortable at.”

In addition to providing health services, the clinic also hosts sister organization, Adoption Choices of Northern California, which offers open adoption programs and manages support groups for birth and adoptive parents. 

Women’s Health Specialists is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m and located at 1469 Humboldt Road in Chico. 

Kirstin Joyce can be reached at [email protected] or @joyce_kirstin on Twitter.