It’s a party to celebrate and educate.
The Women’s Health Foundation is dedicated to empowering all women to embrace pelvic health, and its annual “Below the Belt” gala has become the fundraiser no one wants to miss.
Surprisingly, despite decades of movement toward female equality, more sex education in schools, and the sheer importance of our uniquely female, life giving parts, many women still lack fundamental information and access to appropriate care. That is why savvy, beautiful and determined Missy Lavender, a Kellogg MBA and former banker, founded the Women’s Health Foundation (WHF). And that also is why stars like Mavis Staples donate their time and talent for the annual private concert and WHF fundraiser, “Below The Belt,” Friday, May 17.
Lavender launched WHF after the birth of the first of her two children, when she was plagued by incontinence and other issues previously unknown to her. She was surprised to learn that millions of women suffer them, too.
“I couldn’t laugh, sneeze or lift my baby without leaking,” Lavender explains. Since then, WHF has grown a “network of individuals united in their goal to change this sisterhood of silence into a sisterhood of strength—connecting, educating and empowering women who struggle with pelvic health issues.”
WHF’s work is not limited to women in their childbearing years. Through its Adolescent Pelvic Health Initiative, teens are educated to take care of their pelvic floor muscles before later disorders can develop. Post-menopause education is also available.
Staples isn’t the first singer to grace a Below the Belt” event. Jewel explained her commitment to the cause during her 2010 Below The Belt private concert. As a struggling singer living out of her car, the musician developed a pelvic infection that nearly killed her. Without the funds to pay for quality health care, Jewel was turned away by many Southern California doctors. Fortunately though, one eventually took pity, retrieved her from her car and gave her the treatment that saved her life. Jewel now is firmly committed to this female empowerment sisterhood.
There is still much work to be done, though. “For whatever reason, women are still disconnected from their pelvises,” Lavender says. “This disconnect is epidemic. Most women don’t understand how important this part of their body is or why they need to understand what is inside there and how it works.”
Make It Better is proud to be the media partner for this year’s Below The Belt. To learn more, or purchase tickets, please visit their website.