Emily Holley is a lifelong Iowan and executive director of the 501(c)(4) organization Iowa Voices. -promoted by Laura Belin
We know that personal stories are powerful. Stories we hear from a mother, plagued with anxiety, who can’t afford her son’s autism medications. Stories from a rural physician who’s worried about his own patients foregoing cancer screenings simply because it’s too expensive.
Iowa Voices is excited to partner with Progress Iowa and announce the launch of our latest project, Stories From the Heartland, to share these testimonials. From prescription drug affordability, to the decreased access to health care in rural Iowa, we want to lift up the voices of all Iowans who struggle with the health care system.
From Minden to Cedar Rapids, we’re looking across the state for testimonials. We want to understand the struggles folks face and spread them for all to hear. Although our hardships differ, the common denominator is clear: Our health care system is broken and our legislators aren’t fighting hard enough to fix it.
There’s immense power in our stories, and as one of our late advocates and storytellers, Robin Stone, said so perfectly:
“Cold hard facts are boring and they don’t inspire anyone to do anything, but the personal stories do. When I say to someone that my life depends on this, my child depends on me to stay healthy, that’s personal and that’s real. So we need to tell these stories. People need to hear them.”
It’s our hope that this bank of personal health care stories will start a conversation that our leaders cannot ignore. But, we can’t start this conversation by ourselves. We’re asking Iowans across the state to join us in spreading these stories and forcing our leaders to listen. You can submit your story here.
Our stories are personal, and so is our health. It’s past time we get personal with our elected officials and demand they fix our broken health care system.
We hope you’ll join us in sharing your story,
Iowa Voices and Progress Iowa