The Pregnancy Resource Center opened its new medical clinic Tuesday with a ribbon cutting ceremony and an open house.
The organization, which has been in Kokomo for about 20 years, moved from its previous location at 115 W. Mulberry St. to its new, larger space at 202½ E. Lincoln Road to provide medical services for women who choose to carry a child to term rather than getting an abortion. The center is an anti-abortion, nonprofit organization that receives money only from private donors. There are 12 locations throughout Illinois and Indiana, including the Kokomo location.
The organization, which has been in Kokomo for about 20 years, moved from its previous location at 115 W. Mulberry St. to its new, larger space at 202½ E. Lincoln Road to provide medical services for women who choose to carry a child to term rather than getting an abortion.
On-site nurses will be available at the new clinic to provide free pregnancy testing and ultrasound scans, new additions to what the center offered in the past. Snyder said the center’s next step will be working to provide free testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases.
“A lot of people walk into a hospital ready to deliver a baby and they’ve had no medical care,” Director Carol Snyder said. “You wouldn’t think that would happen with all the opportunities with medical insurance but it does.”
If a client is determined to be pregnant, the center refers patients to local OB-GYN doctors and helps uninsured clients get signed up for insurance.
“We’re just scratching the surface,” Snyder said. “We want them to get into prenatal care.”
Jamie Bauder, a volunteer and former client, came to the center when she was 6 months pregnant and said the emotional support she found at the center was what impacted her the most.
“I could sit there and talk to them and they were always there for me,” Bauder said. “And they’re still there for me.”
The center also offers information on options for pregnant women, pregnancy mentoring and parenting classes. The center provides abstinence-only sexual integrity education to clients as well as outreach education to schools and churches.
Two rooms in the center are filled with tiny shirts and pants, onesies, diapers, baby food, toys and strollers. As an incentive to attend parenting classes, the center will give “parenting dollars” to those who attend classes, which can be used in the center’s “boutique” filled with baby supplies.
“We want to make sure we’re not just getting that initial establishment of their pregnancy,” Snyder said. “We want to be there to support them.”
Snyder said many of their clients have experienced unhealthy relationships and trauma and their sexual integrity programs are aimed at healing wounds that Snyder said she thinks cause them to make decisions they later regret.
“It’s not just to say, ‘Don’t have sex.’ That’s not what it’s about,” Snyder said. “It’s a whole package of healing for women who may have trauma in their life.”
As a pro-life organization, Snyder said they do pray their clients will choose to keep their babies after seeing an ultrasound scan, but she said she knows not everyone chooses to do so.
She said the center supports clients either way and provides post-abortion services for women, including retreats and one-on-one sessions.
“There’s nothing magical here, there’s nothing coercive here,” Snyder said. “We’re just telling the truth and trying to support life.”