Pennsylvania Celebrates 25 Years of a Revolutionary Program That Serves Women in Unexpected Pregnancies
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Sept. 3, 2020
MEDIA ADVISORY, Sept. 3, 2020 /Christian Newswire/ -- Real Alternatives recently celebrated 25 years of serving 322,813 clients through 1,888,825 client visits in Pennsylvania. As the statewide administrator for Pennsylvania's Pregnancy and Parenting Support Program, Real Alternatives assisted those Pennsylvania women via $7.63 million in federal and state public funding.
Real Alternatives uses a network of 29 service providers with 86 pregnancy support centers, maternity homes and other pregnancy help sites in 33 counties, Heartbeat International affiliates among them, with 234 caring and compassionate trained counselors to provide free pregnancy support and parenting education services to women and families in Pennsylvania.
Kevin Bagatta is president and CEO of Real Alternatives.
"When explaining the program to government officials from other states," Bagatta said, "I'll often ask them, 'Do you know what they call a positive approach to the most controversial issue of our time? They call it a solution!'"
Vice President Mike Pence has supported Real Alternatives starting in 2014 as governor of Indiana, directing the state's Department of Health to contract with them to start and operate a $1-million program modeled after Pennsylvania's.
"For more than two decades, Real Alternatives has empowered women for life by providing positive, life-affirming pregnancy and parenting support services to women and families in need. I am grateful to all the men and women who have dedicated their time and talent through the Real Alternatives network," Pence wrote in 2018 congratulating the organization.
In the Real Alternatives model (which could be duplicated in all 50 states) the state hires the organization to administer a statewide program that promotes childbirth rather than abortion. The PA group was the first Alternatives to Abortion Program to receive state and then federal funding. The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is the federally funded portion.
Real Alternatives' goal is to provide life-affirming alternatives to abortion services throughout the nation.
The Pregnancy and Parenting Support Program gets results for taxpayer's investment, as health and Medicaid costs are lowered due to high rates of pre-natal and pediatric care, and immunization.
"With the financial resources provided by taxpayers," stated Bagatta, "the pregnancy support centers, Catholic Charities, maternity homes, and adoption agencies can hire more counselors and open more centers thereby compassionately serving more women in unexpected pregnancies and lower abortions!
"The real alternative to abortion is another person," said Bagatta. "Connecting a woman with that one voice (counselor, pregnancy help center or other resource) is a dual empowering force for life. First for her own and for her baby."
Bagatta eagerly looks forward to the overturn of Roe vs Wade decision, but noted, "Even when that happens, we will still need to continue this work to support women who need help."
"The vision is for the citizens of every state to see their taxpayer dollars to be used to help at risk women, empowering them so they do not need to choose abortion."
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Kim Hayes is a writer for Pregnancy Help News.
SOURCE Real Alternatives
CONTACT: Kim Hayes, 614-985-0700