Michigan volunteer Edwina Marshall was one of thousands of supporters who joined First Lady Michelle Obama in helping to spread the word about how the Affordable Care Act impacts women's health. With help from her husband, James, and the rest of the South Lansing neighborhood team, Edwina hosted a Women's Week of Action event in her neighborhood.
"It was absolutely marvelous—we had about 40 people, which was exactly how many the room held. So we packed the place out!
"The speaker was a local expert on health care, and we had a lot of 'aha' moments as he ran through the Affordable Care Act and what it meant. He talked a great deal about what's in it for women, and since we had a house full of women, they really responded to that. He went through everything from the preventive services it funds to things like pregnancy, domestic violence—all the health issues that primarily affect women. People left with a lot of information—some of these ladies were sitting there taking notes through the whole thing."
"A few people asked about insurance for kids, and people shared their various personal situations," says James. "There was a lot of interest in the Medicare doughnut hole and things that are happening for seniors. It was very positive, because the speaker began his talk with a history of how health care legislation evolved, from the very beginning all the way through the health care law Mitt Romney passed in Massachusetts. You could see people thinking 'wow' and putting two and two together."
The event also helped Edwina and James grow their neighborhood team. Edwina reports:
"We had a lot of people who had not been involved in the campaign up to this point, so when the presentation was over our neighborhood team started floating through the audience and asking people if they were interested in helping out. We see ourselves as trying to help people put the pieces together and give them information—our goal is to make sure people understand the facts, and then more often than not, they'll want to come on board.
"We're not stopping here, either. We're going to have several more events like this for both men and women, plus a few more for women only. We have a connection on campus here in Michigan, so we're going back within the next couple months to have some events there—we'll invite the students to bring their friends, relatives, anyone they want."
Edwina has this advice for supporters of the Affordable Care Act:
"Talk to your friends and neighbors because you're putting a face on it, you're connecting, and that helps people understand how much this hits home for so many."
Find out how the Affordable Care Act affects you, then join folks like Edwina and James by helping to share the facts.