Reducing abortions: The untold story of America’s pregnancy resource centres
A groundbreaking report detailing the impact of thousands of pregnancy resource centres across America has been released by the Family Research Council.
Entitled “A Passion to Serve: A Vision for Life,” the report lays out in detail the manifold contributions of American pregnancy resource centres to their communities, particularly to women, children and families. The nature and scope of the pregnancy centres’ mission is outlined in statistical summaries, case studies and personal testimonies. The report includes the accolades of several public leaders of diverse backgrounds celebrating the movement’s unique contributions.
According to the report, pregnancy centres now assist an average of 5,500 Americans daily with sexuality- and pregnancy-related concerns. The report was introduced in the nation’s capital by the Family Research Council, as well as by presidents of three national pregnancy centre networks that represent more than 2,300 cross-affiliates in all 50 states.
“Thousands of pregnancy care centres and tens of thousands of pro-life counsellors work day in and day out to meet the needs of both mother and baby,” said Rep. Chris Smith of New Jersey in the report. “Because of the work of these unsung heroes, mothers and babies are rescued from the tragedy of abortion.”
Centres often offer health-related services such as STD testing and treatment, ultrasound and prenatal education and care, as well as community programs including abstinence education, parenting classes and fatherhood initiatives. But perhaps the centres’ greatest contribution has been the thousands of lives saved by offering women in crisis pregnancies abortion alternatives, as well as information on the physical and psychological risks of abortion. Many centres also provide a rare source of support for women coping with post-abortion trauma.
“This report shines a light on the positive contributions of pregnancy centres, maternity homes, adoption agencies and pregnancy help medical clinics,” said Heartbeat International president Peggy Hartshorn, PhD. “These faith-based community organizations, 40,000 volunteers strong, brighten a woman’s future with the support she needs to bring new life into the world. This is one of the greatest volunteer service movements in the history of our country.
“We are pleased that this report spotlights 10 Heartbeat International affiliates through stories that demonstrate sacrificial acts of love and service. These frontline lifesavers are strengthening their communities one heart at a time,” said Hartshorn.
“Having been involved with this incredible movement for decades, I can tell you just what a historical moment the release of this report is in our history,” said Care Net president Melinda Delahoyde. “Pregnancy centres have grown quickly and organically over the past four decades to become one of the most critical and reliable non-profit organizations in communities across America.” Care Net supports 1,170 pregnancy centres across America.
“This report tells the untold story about the vast, beneficial impact of pregnancy centres, which are helping to improve maternal and child health and well-being, saving taxpayer dollars and partnering with hundreds of agencies to provide a web of support for women facing unplanned pregnancies,” said Delahoyde.
Family Research Council president Tony Perkins said the report “lays out the untold story of centres that provide caring and compassionate services to at least 1.9 million people each year at little or no cost to the clients, in large part thanks to private charity and the high proportion of volunteers who work at the centres.
“As the national debate over health care continues to unfold, the work of the nation’s more-than-2,300 nonprofit pregnancy resource centres in support of maternal and child health and well-being deserves to be affirmed and supported,” Perkins added. “Pregnancy resource centres support a vision of true reproductive health and are model of faith-based providers meeting a pressing national need.”
This article originally appeared Sept. 30 at LifeSiteNews.com and is reprinted with permission.