Beginning in 2020, area nonprofit A Step Ahead Chattanooga (ASAC) has increased outreach activities throughout the southeast Tennessee region. ASAC provides education and free preventative birth control to any woman of reproductive age who lives or attends school in eighteen counties in southeast Tennessee, north Georgia, and north Alabama – regardless of their income or insurance status. A partnership with The Elsa and Peter Soderberg Foundation will support these outreach efforts by providing a two-to-one match on all new dollars raised in ten counties in southeast Tennessee. Any donation from residents or businesses in Bledsoe, Bradley, Franklin, Grundy, Marion, McMinn, Meigs, Polk, Rhea, or Sequatchie counties will be doubled, up to $20,000, until the end of 2021. 

ASAC envisions a world where women become pregnant on their terms, enabling them, their families, and their communities to thrive. Access to long-term and reversible birth control allows women to decide if and when they want to become pregnant, allowing them to pursue an education, get ahead in their career, have healthier babies, or pursue any other goal before deciding if or when they want to start a family or grow their own.

While A Step Ahead Chattanooga has been removing barriers to contraception through education, outreach, and access to free birth control since 2014, outreach efforts have expanded recently with Health Educators dedicated to specific communities and new partnerships with existing medical offices in rural counties.  ASAC has appointed Lissa Goeltz as Regional Community Investment Officer to focus exclusively on these outlying counties.  Lissa hopes to build relationships with residents who see women’s health and the preventative services offered by ASAC as a high priority to their community’s overall health and well-being.

Lissa is a native of South Pittsburg, TN, and a former ASAC appointment line volunteer.  She understands the growing need and is excited to serve her hometown and the other towns where she was raised. “Every woman, regardless of her income or zip code, deserves access to accurate information and good overall health services. We want to remove the barriers that exist so that women can become pregnant when they are ready and on their terms, using the method that works best for them.”  

ASAC is a prevention-only organization that has connected nearly 5,000 women with access to free birth control and provided reproductive health education to thousands more. There is no better time to join in supporting ASAC as the organization aims to reach even more women.  “We need Community Ambassadors in every pocket of the ten counties I serve. We need folks who can help share our mission with the people who need it and supporters who can help ensure that every time someone calls us for help, we have the resources to answer yes.”  If you would like to help, or to find out more, call A Step Ahead at 423-265-STEP (7837), email lissa@astepaheadchattanooga.org, or visit www.astepaheadchattanooga.org. 



About A Step Ahead Chattanooga

A Step Ahead Chattanooga (ASAC), provides long-term, reversible birth control to any woman in Southeast Tennessee, Northwest Georgia, and Northeast Alabama who wants it. For free. With donations from individuals, companies, and foundations, we ensure that clinical services cost women nothing out-of-pocket. If needed, transportation is covered too. ASAC also provides outreach and education. ASAC believes all women — not only women of means—should have every chance to reach their education, career, and relationship goals. ASAC serves Bledsoe, Bradley, Franklin, Grundy, Hamilton, Marion, Meigs, McMinn, Polk, Rhea, Sequatchie, Catoosa, Dade, Murray, Walker, Whitfield, DeKalb, and Jackson counties. For more information on A Step Ahead Chattanooga’s mission and programs, call 423-752-5250, visit AStepAheadChattanooga.org423-752-5250, or visit AStepAheadChattanooga.org


A Step Ahead Chattanooga’s mission is to remove barriers to preventive, reversible contraception through education, outreach, and access to free birth control. In light of the leaked draft of the Supreme Court’s decision on Roe v. Wade, a secondary conversation is happening in the media and public discourse about a potential future threat to the right to access contraception. We remain deeply committed to and confident in the importance of family planning and contraception access. We know many positive outcomes are possible when people can time their pregnancies for if and when they are socially, emotionally, and financially ready. 

Our work will always be prevention-focused. Choosing preventive, reversible contraception and what method to use is a deeply personal choice between a health care provider and the patient alone. We will continue to provide education about family planning and contraception, knowing that when individuals have access to accurate information, they are better equipped to make decisions right for themselves and their families. We will continue to work to remove barriers to contraception, believing that every individual should be able to select the birth control method that is best for them. Finally, we will remain vigilant as this conversation evolves. 

We are deeply grateful for the support of our community, and I thank you in advance for your continued support. If you are able, I ask you to make a donation today to ensure A Step Ahead Chattanooga can continue meeting the demand for preventive reversible contraception in the months and years to come. Your support is more critical now than at any other time in recent history. To learn more about our work, please visit https://www.astepaheadchattanooga.org/