Our History

Decisions, Choices & Options began in 2002, when founder, Joi Wasill, learned that a dear friend’s 15-year-old daughter was experiencing a crisis pregnancy. The young woman had chosen adoption because she knew that she was not ready to be a mother. However, she later abandoned that plan due to negative comments from her fellow classmates regarding adoption. When Joi, who was a high school teacher at the time, realized that students thought adoption was a “bad thing,” she was determined to get the correct information out there. The presentation started with one high school in 2002 and was well-received by both students and teachers. DCO has grown steadily since then. Our programs have impacted the lives of 85,000 middle and high school students since 2002, bringing them the truth about the challenges of teen pregnancy and the risk of sexual activity. We have counseled pregnant teens to make healthy decisions for themselves and their babies. Some of these teens have even joined DCO, sharing their journey and choices with younger students. In 2012, Executive Director, Joi Wasill, was nominated by U.S. Representative Diane Black and chosen as the recipient of the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute’s “Angel in Adoption” Award, honoring her hard work and contribution to adoption. This past year we presented in 52 high schools to over 8,000 students across the state of Tennessee. In addition to Tennessee, DCO is now a part of the Health, Wellness and Family Life curriculum of some schools in Alabama, Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, and Ohio.