The Benefits of a Resource Program
Nearly four years ago, True Care Women’s Resource Center partnered with what is now known as the Healthy Birth and Infant Brains (HBIB) Foundation to help women have healthier babies. The mission of True Care – to erase the perceived need for abortion by effectively serving pregnant, at risk women, turning their fears into confidence – aligns with the mission of the HBIB Foundation – to help women have healthy pregnancies and lessen the chances of learning disabilities and developmental delays in children.
How do these two missions align? By connecting pregnant women with community resources, agencies and organizations that can meet their physical, psychological, and spiritual needs, True Care’s patients find the confidence they need to carry their babies to term, erasing that perceived need for abortion.
Cheryl Flores, our Resource Coordinator for the Early KinCare Pregnancy Resource Program, connects the women True Care serves with a variety of organizations and programs, depending on their individual needs. Smoking cessation programs, housing referrals (including safe houses for domestic violence victims), and physicians and counselors are just a few of the resources to which she connects our patients. She also follows up with these women to make sure they are getting the help they need. Walking alongside these moms-to-be on a consistent, regular basis lets them know the compassion and interest we have in them doesn’t end after their initial appointment.
Lack of finances is often a significant reason women hesitate to carry their babies to term. Whether that’s due to unemployment, a low-paying job, no insurance, or a combination of these factors, many pregnant women fear they won’t be able to pay hospital expenses and care for their children. Through the Early KinCare Pregnancy Resource Program, Cheryl connects women to job training programs and employment agencies as well as educational programs to help women obtain their GED and/or minors to finish their high school courses. Education can be a key to greater earning potential. Cheryl can also sign up women who qualify for Medicaid. Leaving True Care after that initial visit knowing she has insurance alleviates some of the stress a woman experiences when she has an unplanned pregnancy.
The benefits of a resource program at a pregnancy center are many. Having a staff member whose job it is to know those resources well is invaluable. There are many organizations, agencies, and programs in our community which can help women in need – from food pantries and thrift stores to job training and education programs. Connecting our pregnant patients with resources relieves many anxieties they have, empowering them to carry their babies to term.
The Early KinCare Resource Program has been a huge blessing during the past four years. Statistics for the first few years of the program show positive results. For example, 8.9% of babies born to women who were enrolled in the program were low birth weight compared to 9.1% of babies born in Natrona County during 2015, and that same year, 5.6% of babies born to women in the program were born at less than 37 weeks gestation compared to 9.7% of other babies born in Natrona County.
True Care is grateful to the HBIB Foundation for allowing us to serve the pregnant women of our community with greater excellence by connecting them to many resources they may not know about, and, through those resources, turning their fears into confidence.