BY Karen Focht MA, LMFT
Throughout my career I have found the challenge of infertility to come up over and over again while working with couples. 10-15 percent of couples in the US are touched by infertility in some way. After attempting to conceive for a year, a couple can quickly find themselves thrown into the world of infertility and treatment. Although there are many various treatment options available today, infertility can be a very lonely place. I often found myself advocating for clients through resources, education and support through family and friends. Although these are all very helpful and important forms of support, there was something missing. This is where Shine comes into play.
Shine is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to providing unique support to women who are faced with fertility challenges. I was fortunate enough to be introduced to Shine’s founder, Katie O’Connor, who shared her own journey within the fertility world. Something that quickly stood out through our conversation was that the statistics are staggering and yet women aren’t talking about what is happening through their fertility struggles. Through this realization, Shine was born. Here are some details on what Shine is all about!
Fertility Friends Mentorship Program: Through one to one support, the mentorship program matches a new member with someone who has successfully completed their fertility journey. This is an opportunity to share your journey and challenges with a mentor who can closely relate to the experience. Receiving empathy and understanding can make a tremendous difference throughout the overall experience.
SHINE TOGETHER PROGRAMS:
In Person Support Meeting: These meetings provide peer support, open discussion along with the opportunity to hear from a professional guest speaker. “The goal is to create a community that allows us to laugh and cry, side by side, while celebrating our successes and battling our challenges, as well as providing knowledge to feel empowered throughout our journeys”. **Meetings are held on a monthly basis
Virtual Support Call: This is a group support phone call where members connect and share their fertility journey in a confidential format. **Held on the last Wednesday of the month at 8pm CST.
Shine Social: This fun event is an opportunity to learn more about Shine along with giving back in order to help continue the organizations mission and success. Details can be found at www.eventbrite.com/e/shine-social-tickets-37693411007
For more information please visit http://www.shinefertility.org