United in Our Care for Vulnerable Women
We asked a number of national pro-life advocates to answer the question, “How can we best support vulnerable women faced with an unplanned pregnancy?” Here are their responses:
CEO, President & General Counsel | Alliance Defending Freedom
Our laws should protect all innocent lives and support mothers choosing life for their children. We must foster a culture of life through intentional protections and tangible acts of service toward vulnerable mothers-to-be, reaffirming the fact that abortion is never the answer. Creating conditions where both mother and baby can flourish demands action from each of us—individuals, families, churches, lawmakers, and communities—whether it’s opening our home to adoptive or foster children, supporting pregnancy care centers, revitalizing church ministries for single moms, equipping men to be good husbands and fathers, reallocating resources away from the abortion industry to assist moms in need, or engaging in community-specific ways to show charity. We have the great opportunity before us to exercise the same courage, commitment, and sacrifice that every woman displays when she chooses life.
President | March for Life
While each situation is different, a mom facing an unexpected pregnancy with a unique, unrepeatable, and very vulnerable baby needs to hear more than anything, “You’ve got this!” The mother needs to know that she has what it takes to choose life, and that if she makes that choice she will be empowered for the journey. She needs real, deep friendship and support; someone who will come alongside her and truly help and encourage her. If adoption is a possibility for her, she needs to know that such a choice is noble and heroic. Finally, she needs the wealth of resources available both privately and publicly through pregnancy centers, maternity homes, and other sources that provide financial and emotional support, as well as the safety and education she needs to thrive.
Vice President of Public Policy | Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America
In post-Roe America, the people speaking through elected lawmakers—not judges—will debate and decide how to better serve women and save lives. After decades of court-imposed abortion on demand until birth, tragically, countless women have learned abortion is anything but the quick, easy, liberating solution they were promised. Over the years, thousands of pregnancy centers, maternity homes, and others stepped up to provide real assistance. With initiatives like Her PLAN, a project of SBA Pro-Life America Education Fund, pro-life advocates are joining forces to support and grow life-affirming resources in our communities, while we continue building a national consensus that embraces the unborn and their mothers.
Vice President of Legal Affairs | National Institute of Family & Life Advocates (NIFLA)
These women deserve support and care so they can make an informed choice. There is a network of almost 3,000 pregnancy centers nationwide ready and able to do just that. Many women who have chosen abortion reveal that they made that decision only because they felt like they did not have any other choice. That’s wrong! At pregnancy centers, they are invited to a safe space to take a moment and explore all their options. More than 500,000 free ultrasounds are provided by these centers every year, opening a window to the womb that is life-changing!
President | Students for Life Action & Students for Life of America
To help pregnant and parenting women, we need to be practical so that our love is not expressed in words alone. The Scripture has tangible advice on helping people in crisis. Jesus says in Matthew 25 that the people who best expressed his love on earth paid attention to basic needs as they built relationship. This motivation to show tangible love is behind Students for Life of America’s Standing with You initiative, which helps connect women with help at the federal, state, and local levels, bringing them into the pro-life community with hope for their future as well as for their children. And we invite all to join us for an August event Standing with Her Sunday because we know that we need to work together to show love that changes lives.
President & CEO | Care Net
There are two key areas the pro-life movement can focus on. First, we need to support not only women but also men who are facing unplanned pregnancies. According to our two national surveys of women who had abortions and men who participated in abortions, both women and men agree that the father of the baby is the most influential factor in a woman's abortion decision. We must engage him in a positive way if we seek to fully serve those considering abortion. Second, the Church must get involved in a proactive way in ministering to women and men facing unplanned pregnancies. We can't end abortion without the long-term discipleship of those who are at-risk for abortion, and only the Church can do that. So, we must link pregnancy centers and churches together for this holistic approach to care. Care Net developed a tool called Making Life Disciples to facilitate this approach. Doing these two things will move us from being pro-life to Pro Abundant Life.
Policy Analyst | The Heritage Foundation
There’s often a very specific emotion associated with unplanned pregnancy: fear. So to support women walking this road, it’s important that we acknowledge her fear but also build her up so that she can also feel hopeful. This means coming alongside her to assure her that she won’t be alone, that she is capable, and that her child can bring a special kind of joy to her life and the lives of others. Every single one of us has a role to play in supporting, encouraging, and building up mothers so that fear can turn into hope.
President | Heartbeat International
Every woman deserves love and support during an unexpected pregnancy. Heartbeat International is the largest network of pregnancy help serving communities in all 50 states and more than 80 countries worldwide with a vision to make abortion unwanted today and unthinkable for future generations. We move toward this vision by equipping a life-affirming network of pregnancy centers, medical clinics, maternity homes, and non-profit adoption agencies that provide compassionate care and practical resources for women at no cost, empowering them to make positive choices for their families and their futures.
ADF team members contributed to the writing and publication of this article.