Prostitutes' Options, Referrals and Alternatives Inc. (PORA) Collection

Prostitutes' Options, Referrals and Alternatives Inc (PORA) was created by Dee Nelson. PORA began in September 1993, after word spread about her night-time walks through the streets of Springfield, talking to prostitutes about the help available and offering free tutoring. During PORA's first two years of existence, it operated out of a paint closet at the YWCA, 421 E. Jackson St. Through grant money and donations, PORA bought the vacant building on 11th Street in 1995 and refurbished the structure, mostly with volunteer labor, opening their doors to both live-in and walk-in clients. PORA's office at 930 South 11th St. opened in August 1997, providing three rooms for up to six women who want to go through rehabilitation and leave the world of prostitution.  PORA volunteers and clients launched ABBA Graphics, a not-for-profit graphic arts business. PORA disbanded in 2009.

The collection includes meeting agendas and minutes, directors reports, financial materials, operational documentation, board of directors materials, articles, and photographs. It also includes a binder of samples from ABBA Graphics. There are also materials related to a research paper written by Dr. Ralph Leonard of SIU Medical Center about recidivism of prostitution clients. The study included PORA clients.