by laura foronda, 2016 summer community organizing intern
Throughout the summer, I have learned different skills and gained a lot of knowledge, all thanks to my NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia internship. The reason I wanted to work for NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia was because I believe that every woman deserves the respect to make decisions regarding her body. Going into this internship, I had a good amount of reproductive health knowledge but I did not realize how much more there was to learn. Now that I’m reflecting on this opportunity, I feel as though I have gained a lot just by being surrounded by the people that make up this great organization.
Most of my internship consisted of assisting Keisy Chavez, the Northern Virginia Community Organizer, with a number of tabling and canvassing outreach programs. I started off leading tabling events such as the weekend at the Fairfax Fair and later on, I even got involved with voter registration. I was also able to help deliver the TRAP Board of Health comments, which was a significant moment after the SCOTUS trial of Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. The day of the trial was definitely my most memorable moment this summer. The amount of love and celebration I felt that day outside the Supreme Court was amazing and empowering.
Furthermore, helping out in events such as NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia’s annual Power of Choice Gala and the Northern Virginia Leadership and Advocacy Summit: Building Diverse Communities for Reproductive Rights & Justice helped me meet a lot of amazing people that shared the same outlook on reproductive justice as I do. I became more passionate about women’s health overall and how important it is to fight for our right to decide. Working under Keisy was incredibly rewarding, mostly because she was very outgoing, informative, and definitely someone I look up to. I learned a lot from her just from spending time with her these past couple of months. This internship has given me an immense amount of knowledge that has only made me more passionate about being pro-choice.