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This week marks Utah’s first official Infertility Awareness Week



One in six people over their lifetime will struggle with infertility. Based on Utah’s current population, over 90,000 individuals, both men and women, will struggle with fertility problems at some point in their lifetime.

This spring, Governor Cox signed a proclamation declaring the week of April 22-27 Infertility Awareness Week throughout the state. The week was first established in 1989 nationwide by Resolve, the National Infertility Association, but this is its first year the event has been recognized in Utah.

“Infertility touches everyone, regardless of income, race, religion. It’s not a respecter of persons. It’s not a personal failing, it’s a medical diagnosis,” said Shelli Mecham, executive director of the Utah Infertility Resource Center. 

The Utah Infertility Resource Center (UIRC) has free resources to offer those experiencing infertility, including classes, support groups and much more. They have organized a variety of events for the week at Meet Me on 33rd in Millcreek, including a trivia night, women’s circle, April night out and yoga for fertility. These events are offered routinely, usually on a monthly basis. 

UIRC is a one-of-a-kind organization. While they aren’t the only group in the nation offering infertility resources, they are unique in that they offer “wrap-around” services, helping couples and individuals struggling to conceive in all stages of infertility and from all walks of life. 

Not only does UIRC host events and support groups, but theyalso offer therapy services, hold an annual conference, and issue grants to help pay for family-building services such as in vitro fertilization (IVF), surrogacy and adoption. 

UIRC also has various online and remote resources, including multiple Facebook groups–Infertility Support Group and Your Infertility Community–and their Infertility Navigator, a concierge-style service where couples can be guided to fertility treatments and other resources.


“We want people to be able to come and get their individual questions answered, get a lot of resources, but then also be able to tap back in, so it’s not a one-shot deal. You can come back multiple times. Jamie Carroll does this, and she’ll email you and follow up with more resources. If she finds something later that you might need, she’ll send that to you. We wanted it to be a little bit more of an ongoing relationship,” said Mecham.

Utah is fairly unique in its family-centric culture. Mecham points out that this makes things that much more difficult for those 1-in-6 people who struggle with fertility.

“We’re so family centered, and whether it really happens or not, the perception is that you’re not a real adult until you have kids. It’s hard to connect to the community if you’re in your twenties and thirties and don’t have kids. There’s just a lot of stigma around it, so that’s why going to a support group is super helpful, because you can talk to people that get it,” said Mecham.

Another resource offered by UIRC is in-house therapists, available both online and in-person.

“We have two females and one male now taking clients. They all have training, experience and connections to infertility and loss. Our male therapist is a marriage and family therapist, which is great for couples because it [infertility] affects your relationship, so it’s great to have a therapist who specializes in that. And it’s great that we have a man because a third of the causes of infertility are male factors. People often think, ‘That’s just a woman’s problem,” but no, it’s not. Having a male therapist who understands the male perspective is really great,” said Mecham.

With all the talk about IVF in politics recently, Mecham added that it’s more important now than ever before to advocate for fertility treatments.

“There’s a bill in congress for the protection of IVF access that Sen. Duckworth is sponsoring, and I’d encourage people to write to their representatives asking that they support it. Let your representatives know that you support IVF,” Mecham added.

UIRC’s in-person offerings are all currently only held in Salt Lake, Tooele, Weber and Davis counties, but if those in Utah County who are interested reach out to the organization and ifthere is enough interest, they can begin offering support groups and yoga for fertility classes in the area. 


To request in-person groups in Utah County, email To learn more about UIRC and request resources, visit

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