Good question! Let's use an anology all college students can relate to. Prenatal care is important, but it is kind of like skipping class all semester and then studying for the final. It helps, but not as much as being prepared all term. A similar thing happens in pregnancy. In the first few weeks of pregnancy before a woman knows she's pregnant and has entered prenatal care, the nervous system, heart, arms, eyes, legs and other body parts have finished the most important part of their development. Sure, there is still a lot that will happen during the rest of the pregnancy, but just like you're more likely to flunk the final if you didn't study all semester, you're more likely to have health problems if you aren't already healthy before the pregnancy starts.
Making matters worse, unplanned pregnancies result in almost half of all births in California. This means we can't wait until people want to get pregnant to improve their health and health habits, it has to happen now.
Peer Preconception Educators are central to our goal of educating all communities in California about the importance of preconception health. We teach college students like you about preconception health, train you to start a campus chapter if there isn't already one at your school, connect you to community partners with whom you can collaborate on projects, and provide general support. Best of all, you can get credit for your work which will help you when you apply for jobs!
We sure hope so! Peer Educators are invaluable to preconception health. The Peer Educators program is open to all students enrolled and in good standing at any post-secondary institution in California. View the links below for information about the program and upcoming trainings.