“We were all,” says Diana Hamann, “like most women in Evanston, all stunned.”

And, adds Rachel Hershinow, “there was a lot of sadness, anger and feeling helpless.”

And so Hershinow, Hamann, and several other women who own Evanston businesses “met and we decided to do something,” Hershinow says, to react to the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade and the right to abortion.

The business owners got together about ten days ago and formed a group called Evanstonians for Reproductive Freedom.

“We made up the name on the spot,” Hershinow explains.

Their goal, through a variety of fundraising activities, is to contribute $100,000 to Planned Parenthood.

Certainly deep-blue Evanston is a place where pro-choice fundraisers should be able to succeed.

“There is strength in numbers,” Hershinow notes.

“Evanston is such a diverse and progressive community. We’re lucky to live here.”

Besides organizing a GoFundMe drive, the business owners are piggybacking on a number of already scheduled events, with part or all of the proceeds now slated for Planned Parenthood.

The month-long series of events begins Sunday at the Custer Street Oasis, where Hamann’s Wine Goddess is putting on a “Old School Vinyl Dance Party.”

There will also be retail-related fundraisers, with participating merchants donating a portion of sales to the cause.

And on Aug. 20, the Nasty Women Art Show will direct what is sold to Planned Parenthood as well.

Considering Evanston’s politics, Hamann says “I think $100,000 is too small.”

Jeff Hirsh joined the Evanston Now reporting team in 2020 after a 40-year award-winning career as a broadcast journalist in Cincinnati, Ohio.

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