Ms. Alison Hoover, an MPH student at the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health, was recently selected as one of 40 honorees in the 2019 cohort of 120 Under 40: The New Generation of Family Planning Leaders. Led by The Bill & Melinda Gates Institute for Population and Reproductive Health with support from Bayer, the awards recognize young leaders working to advance family planning and reproductive health. Forty recipients are selected each year for three years, bringing the total to 120 for the program.
Aside from the prestige and networking opportunities that come with being a 120 Under 40 winner, Ms. Hoover will receive $1,000 to put toward her work in family planning, which she plans to direct to a California project she started earlier this year working with local shelters and health departments to provide menstrual products to homeless women in the Bay Area.
Coming to the East Bay area after living abroad, Ms. Hoover was startled to find homelessness at crisis levels.
“I wanted to find something that was a more meaningful contribution than dollar bills and granola bars, and so I put on my lens of expertise, and started looking into it,” she says. She found that while there was some access to contraception, there was very little access to sanitary products.
With boots on the ground, Ms. Hoover talked to homeless women about their needs, led a GoFundMe effort to raise money, and began purchasing supplies last spring. Now, she’s working to develop relationships with San Francisco shelters, organizations, and libraries to stock supplies and meet the community’s needs.
Learn more about Ms. Hoover.Tags: Friday Letter Submission, Publish on November 29