Summer squash crudo 1 eegqab

Fresh fare could keep your mother or sister healthy.

Image: Carla Gomez

We’d need the length of a rap album to list all the industry ladies you have and have not heard of that are participating in  I’ll Have What She’s Having, the newly minted Houston organization of women chefs, hospitality professionals, entrepreneurs, physicians, scientists and artists. But what you need to know is that it kicks off its dinner pop-up series, A Taste of Things to Come, today at Coltivare at 6:30 p.m. The goal is to raise community awareness and funds in support of women’s health. The goal for this year? $1 million. The goal for years to come? Getting back the funding for our healthcare. 

One million dollars isn’t too much to ask when you think of the mothers, daughters and sisters, especially in rural communities, who have seen their access to cancer screenings, preventative care, birth control and in general women’s healthcare disappear in the last five years. In 2011, the Texas state legislature voted to cut family planning funding by $73 million in an effort to defund Planned Parenthood, a provider of abortions. One need not have an opinion on abortion to suspect that women’s health programs are being eliminated by the magnitude of this funding decrease. Perhaps in this instance, the baby is being thrown out with the bath water. Unbeknownst to many, the worst-case scenario in rural counties is the cutting of their OB programs completely. In short, women are forced to travel to a different county just to deliver their baby

The Guardian reports that a new study has found that since the budget cuts, Texas has seen a drastic increase in teen pregnancy, and the maternal mortality rate has more than doubled. Texas now has the highest maternal mortality rate in the developed world. This year, in an effort to pacify anti-abortion groups, our lawmakers have voted to significantly reduce federal funding for women’s healthcare. No doubt, the rest of the United States will quickly be catching up to Texas. 

The event today is $55 for three courses (not including beverage and tip).  It’s strongly encouraged that you bring an unopened box of feminine products or adult diapers. Claire Smith will be handling the appetizers, Kaitlin Steets, an Oxheart alum, is banging out the main course and Karen Man will be gracing us with her breads and dessert. Because Houston is still hurting from Harvey, all proceeds from this pop-up, and most likely the next few, will go directly to helping displaced women in the greater Northeast Houston neighborhoods.

Up to bat next is chef Valerie Trasatti of Benevento Bakeshop. The event will be held at the charming Blue Heron Farm on October 8 and will be done in the form of a wine and cheese tasting. Fresh baked creations, Blue Heron Farm and Houston Dairymaids cheeses, wine and goats? We're there.

Tickets can be purchased at illhavewhatsheshaving.com. Information on how to volunteer or donate is there too.

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