Hyde and go seek funding: A mixed-methods study of abortion funds in the US
Awarded 2017
Trainee Grants
Ariella Messing, BA
Johns Hopkins University

Abortion funds raise money from individuals and foundations to provide financial and logistical assistance to people who need help accessing abortion care. Despite the increasing importance of abortion funds in ensuring that all individuals can access abortion care, this area remains dramatically under-studied in the literature. This novel, interdisciplinary study will employ empirical methods to examine the composition and characteristics of abortion funds as well as the lived experiences of abortion fund staff and employ philosophical methods to consider and contextualize the normative implications of the empirical findings. The first aim will employ a survey and document analysis to create a typology of abortion funds. Based on these findings, the second aim will identify participants for semi-structured in-depth interviews to better understand the motivations for, experiences of, and impact of volunteering or working for an abortion fund. Lastly, the third aim will analyze these empirical findings through a normative lens, in conjunction with legal and philosophical literature, to consider whether there is societal, collective, or individual obligation to fund abortion care. This study will be conducted in cooperation with the National Network of Abortion Funds (NNAF) and complements the research proposals of two other NNAF-partnered studies. Findings from this research will fill a significant gap in the literature, inform future research directions and practice, and illuminate the voices and experiences of those doing critical behind-the-scenes work to enable access to abortion care.