TEXARKANA, Texas — For nearly 50 years, the First Choice Pregnancy Resource Center has provided services to women and men facing unplanned pregnancies.
Not only does the nonprofit support its programs through donations from the community, but these funds are now helping it expand its services to rural areas.
When someone is faced with an unplanned pregnancy, director Kristie Wright says she wants to be her first choice, whether she’s considering adoption, abortion or parenthood.
“We can provide them with resources, be a non-judgmental listening ear, and talk to them about what’s going on in life and why they’re considering this. See if we can’t help them with that process,” Wright said.
The association is preparing to launch its new mobile unit called Leah.
It is named after the daughter of one of their donors.
The total cost of the unit is $220,000.
Wright says transportation is a real issue for many of their clients.
“Unfortunately, they might be able to get to the abortion clinic easier than they are in town to see us, so we want to be able to get to them,” Wright said.
The mobile unit will allow the nonprofit organization to travel to rural areas and provide pregnancy tests, ultrasounds and peer counseling.
The long-term goal of the center is to also provide distance education.
Wright says generous donations are really the cogs that keep their services going.
The non-profit organization also has a mom’s store. Everything inside is donated by corporations, volunteers, and other nonprofits, like Altrusa Texarkana and the Iota Phi Lamdba Sorority Inc. Epsilon Xi Chapter.
Wright says the donated items are the incentive that helps bring customers in.
“They stay once they realize I’m learning something, and it’s a good environment for me, but that’s really the draw, is they’ll be able to get items for their kids without cost to them. They just have to earn it by taking classes,” Wright explained.
Wright says they plan to launch the mobile unit before the end of the year.
They’re just waiting to install the ultrasound machine.