Rev. Karie Ann Charlton is the associate pastor at Third Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) and is the leader of the Pittsburgh Chapter of Days for Girls. DFG’s mission is to make menstrual products available to every girl, everywhere, period. In part, that means to make reusable menstrual hygiene kits. It also means providing women’s health education and advocating for women’s rights.
Karie sees her call as one of connecting faith and feminism. Unfortunately, many people think of religious organizations as being against women’s rights, but Karie hopes to change that attitude in her work and on her blog, periodpastor.com. It is through the blog that Karie reflects on her work and interprets it as part of living out her faith.
Karie believes that the duty of every strong woman is to raise other women, and she works to build relationships and valuable learning and growing opportunities as well.
From the basement of Third Church, Karie reaches out and engages community members to help fabricate and assemble the kits for shipment. Notably, women at the Community Correction Center and Cece’s Place (these women are reentering the community after being in prison or rehab), clients of Easter Seals (adults with special needs), local students (co-ed), and other inspiring men and women in the Pittsburgh area. Karie and the church provide a space and create an environment in which these women feel loved and valued and have an opportunity to share their work with other women. Students have been especially helpful; Karie has developed volunteer relationships with college and high school students and has brought them into a fuller appreciation of working with other women’s organizations to focus on matters of health, advocacy, and sustainability. Strong women (and men) from Third Church and the Pittsburgh Community make up the consistent volunteer trainers, as well as, provide the financial support for ongoing efforts.
Karie is a member of Inspired Women, which is a women’s philanthropy group that focuses on helping other women; she is also a member of Young Clergy Women International, which is a support network for clergy women 40 years old and younger.
Karie lives in the Greentree neighborhood of Pittsburgh with her husband Kurtis and their rescue dog, Penelope. Kurtis has his own blog Scratch N’ Dent Life and sometimes they sit on the back porch and write together while Penelope plays in the yard.