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  • Uebelhor
February 08, 2012
There were 104 babies born in 2011 who might not have been if it weren't for the Choices for Women Resource Center.

That's 104 times that a mother held her newborn baby for the first time, 104 times the world got to experience a first smile and 104 times that a scared, unsure pregnant woman was shown love.

It's the latter that may be the most powerful.

Anytime love can be given to someone who may be struggling to see that love even exists, the impact can have far-reaching benefits.

You see, love offers hope, and hope provides motivation, and motivation results in change. Change, in this case, is a woman seeing life — that of her unborn child as well as her own — for what it truly is: a unique gift.

Seeing that value — whether in a person's own life or someone else's — for the first time can be awe-inspiring. Not only does it make a person realize that things once thought impossible actually are possible, it causes them to respect others.

Respect, in turn, causes us to treat others as we would have them treat us. I'm pretty sure we've heard that before, but, unfortunately, it's a rule we often tarnish.

That is what makes the work of the Choices for Women Resource Center, which is located at 2019 E. Spring St. in New Albany (1-812-941-0872) but helps women and couples from throughout the region, truly special.

The center's staff and approximately 90 volunteers would love to see every pregnant woman they come in contact with choose to give birth to her baby instead of having an abortion. That, unfortunately, isn't going to happen, but they don't pass judgment and, instead, do what they can to make each woman feel loved. They understand that their work is not just about the life of the unborn baby; it's also about that of the mother.

A Christian-based nonprofit organization, the Choices for Women Resource Center shares Jesus with the women, with many inviting Him into their lives. However, even if a woman doesn't accept Christ as savior, the center still does what it can to give her the information she needs to make, no matter what she decides, a life-changing decision.

For those who choose to have their baby, the center, understanding that the challenges don't end after the baby is born, continues offering help. Couples may participate in education programs, including the Earn While You Learn Program, which allows them to earn "Boutique Bucks" through parenting and life-skills classes and one-on-one mentoring. The Boutique Bucks may be redeemed in the center's Blessing Boutique for needed but costly items like diapers, baby wash and even car seats.

In 2011, 400 clients received parenting and life-skills training as well as material assistance.

The center also doesn't forget about women who have chosen to have an abortion. Understanding that a woman who has had an abortion may struggle physically, emotionally or spiritually, sometimes even years later, the center offers Healing Choices, a support group.

All of the services offered by the center are free and, perhaps more important, confidential.

The center is able to do what it does because its motives are based in love and there are many people, also guided by love, who support it financially. In fact, it is in the process of relocating to a larger facility across town along Charlestown Road.

In 2011, because of the efforts of the center and its supporters, there were 104 first breaths, 104 first giggles and 104 women who, despite being scared and, in many cases, alone, chose to show love to another human being — their unborn baby — because they were shown love first.

That love will be felt for years to come, by many different people, as those children and mothers come in contact with others. All because they were shown love first.

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