Ever found yourself in a foreign country, thousands of miles away from home, unsure where to pick up a pack of tampons or how to get your hands on emergency contraception? Or maybe you’ve recently moved abroad and don’t know where the heck to turn for an STI screening.
Gynopedia is a digital resource for women in need of sexual and reproductive health information, which targets those exact issues.
“Our mission is to provide practical, nonjudgmental information so that users can feel empowered and make informed decisions,” the website reads.
After searching cities like “Toronto,” “Phoenix” and “New Delhi” on Gynopedia, we have to admit, we’re impressed with the level of information currently available — we learned how to find various forms of birth control, abortion rules, STI tests and more in each spot — despite the website being fairly new. This, ladies, is the kind of resource we’ve been waiting for.
“I lived in Istanbul for a while a few years back, and I remembered how challenging it was to get a proper STD test there,” said founder Lani Fried. “And not just in Turkey: I have moved to and from a lot of different American cities, and have always had to do way too much research to gain information on what is basic but essential stuff.”
Currently, there are 67 cities from 48 countries in Africa, Asia, and North and South America housed in the Gynopedia database. But Fried’s goal is to grow the digital resource into something huge. “I want to have a Gynopedia page for as many cities as possible,” she told Broadly.
Much like Wikipedia, the content on Gynopedia is user-generated. Anyone can create a page or update existing information — the system relies heavily on the knowledge, honesty and experience of the general public. While this format of information sharing can be incredibly powerful, it also increases the chances of trolls inundating the pages with spam and fake information, if not properly patrolled. This is why Fried needs our help.
“If you feel like getting your hands (digitally) dirty, and being a fact-checker and/or editor, and occasional gatekeeper of real vs. spammy/troll info, then please let me know,” she wrote on the website. Because right now, it’s just her managing the entire digital property. Which, she admits, is terrifying. “I would absolutely love some help, and there’s no expectation surrounding how much effort you put forth. Any help, big or small, is amazing.”
To contribute to Gynopedia, navigate on over to the site and create an account — it just takes a few minutes.
This is one digital space we’re deeming worthy of your time and energy.