Meeting Critical Needs is Only the Beginning
CareNet of DuPage is the first step for women facing an unplanned pregnancy. By providing compassionate care, and access to resources that meet practical needs, women are empowered to choose life. But that’s not the whole story.
CareNet counselors continue to provide assistance long after a woman’s initial visit, even after her baby is born, connecting her with those resources best equipped to provide ongoing emotional, spiritual and practical support. The most important resource for supporting women and their families long-term is the church. As a Christian non profit organization, CareNet partners closely with local churches to provide lasting care and discipleship.
CareNet “Connections” Provides Individual Support
CareNet’s Connections program brings a local church or ministry group together with a pregnant woman in need. The purpose of the program is to form a network of support around a woman and her baby, so that her quality of life will be enhanced and her spiritual life will be further encouraged. A Connections group formally commits to prayer support during a woman’s pregnancy and a baby shower after her baby is born, though most groups are much more involved. By forming a relationship with a church family during her pregnancy, many women and families maintain that connection for years afterward.
CareNet “Advocates” Equips Churches to Meet Unplanned Pregnancy
Another important link between CareNet and local churches is the CareNet Advocates program. By training church volunteers to have a deep understanding of CareNet’s services, and initiating a church group to be recognized as a trustworthy resource, Advocates are equipped to make referrals to CareNet as well as to provide confidential emotional and spiritual support within the church.
Many Women in Unplanned Pregnancies Are Already Connected to a Church
A 2015 study by Lifeway Research indicated that about two-thirds of women with an abortion self-identify as a Christian, and about one-third of women attend a Christian church at least once a month. In addition, about 3 in 10 pregnancy tests administered at CareNet are negative, broadening the number of women overall who are affected by the possibility of an unplanned pregnancy. These statistics all indicate that the church is already a part of the process. Whether women connected to a church are experiencing an unplanned pregnancy or have an abortion in their past, or whether women who come to CareNet are introduced to a church for the first time, a close partnership between CareNet and the local church makes sense.
CareNet counselors speak the truth in love, spend time learning about real needs that women face and working to meet those needs, and direct women toward the transforming power of Christ’s love. As a Christian non profit organization, CareNet works alongside churches to meet some of the most challenging needs that women and families face. In order to continue the chain of support and discipleship that further transformation, the church is uniquely equipped to provide ongoing care to families. Together, we can encourage the abundant life that God intends.