In 2020, we’ve been living a reality we didn’t foresee. Our world is now a place where fear has risen up for many. Untold numbers of people are coping with job loss, financial crises, illness, and death. People are feeling isolated under shelter-in-place orders, and students are trying their best to learn from home. Suicide rates, domestic violence rates, and child abuse rates have sky-rocketed, increasing over 100% in areas since the pandemic began.
If there is anything that can bring hope into the chaos, it’s that none of this caught the Lord by surprise. Neither COVID-19 or its impact will thwart His sovereign and perfect will.
Caring Network is a local pro-life non-profit organization that has been serving the western suburbs of Chicago since 1981. By providing free, vital services and compassionate support to women who are facing unplanned pregnancies, we have continued to save lives and impact families for almost 40 years. Learn more about our compassionate, frontlines work today.
Adaptive Pregnancy Services
The events of 2020 have required all of us to adapt in one way or another, and non-profits like Caring Network are no exception.
It can be frustrating to learn that elective abortions are deemed an “essential service” in Illinois. At the same time, the delay of necessary procedures has caused harm and death to countless people because their genuine needs are declared “non-essential.” Despite the temptation to direct our efforts in battles that aren’t ours, Caring Network is committed to staying focused on our mission to compassionately care for women who are facing an unexpected pregnancy.
We won’t shrink back from fighting for women, men, and the preborn children, and we are adapting so we can continue to empower women to overcome obstacles when they are overwhelmed with fear, uncertainty, and often pressure.
Non-profits, like other businesses, have had to adapt in 2020, and Caring Network, including our six centers in DuPage County, have made adjustments to our communication and clinic visits.
You may have seen the memes and spoofs about digital meetings. As funny as those are, they are indeed a valuable tool during this time in history. You might even be spending more time on Zoom than ever before.
We’re committed to keeping our staff and clients protected during this time, and social distancing through digital communication is one way we’re able to do that.
As our staff works remotely, we’ve stayed informed and in community with one another through team meetings using digital communication.
In addition to keeping communication strong with one another, we’re also staying connected to clients, volunteers, and supportive partners by phone. With all the confusion about what is open and what isn’t, women must know that our clinics are open and available to serve them. We have adapted our client website to include messages on the landing page that communicate our intentionality to ensure everyone’s health and safety.
Women feel immense anxiety when they think they might be unexpectedly pregnant, so we also inform clients that same-day appointments are available. We need to be available to talk with them as soon as possible because they understandably desire quick answers. If they have to wait for an appointment, they may move on to a clinic that deceives them with biased information.
We’ve heard numerous accounts from regretful women who felt misled into an abortion decision because they weren’t told the truth or offered options. The heart of this ministry is to be a source of honest and compassionate support.
What Has Not Changed
Despite changes in the non-profits of our society amidst COVID-19, some things haven’t changed at Caring Network, including our mission, values, purpose, and commitment to providing care to women with excellence.
We continue to:
- Welcome women (and their partners) with unconditional love and without judgment
- Help women choose life over abortion through practical assistance
- Display integrity and earn trust in every interaction and service
- Support and present adoption as a viable choice
- Never discriminate on any basis in providing services to the community
Additionally, our helpline continues to be staffed with expertly trained pregnancy consultants who understand the unique needs of the women deciding about unplanned pregnancies. Our pregnancy consultants also continue to answer questions and schedule appointments.
Adjustments to Providing Care
There is no question providing care to a woman facing an unplanned pregnancy is essential, so we’ve made carefully planned adjustments.
Remote Phone Consultations:
Prior to the current environment surrounding COVID-19, when a woman called one of our centers, she could usually make an in-clinic visit appointment. We have adjusted this process so that currently when a woman calls, she will speak with one of our client advocates who will schedule a remote phone consultation appointment with one of our expert pregnancy consultants.
During the remote phone consultation, the pregnancy consultant will talk with the caller about her situation and engage in conversation about perceived obstacles she’s facing as she navigates her unplanned pregnancy. Women also receive information about tangible community resources. Based upon pre-determined criteria and professional judgment, the client will be offered an in-person ultrasound appointment at one of our centers.
Meeting with a woman face-to-face is invaluable. We can convey compassion and professionalism over the phone. Still, when a woman can spend time with another person who carries the heart of a loving Father, it’s powerful. She can feel the warmth of the Holy Spirit, see the countenance of authentic empathy, and hear no judgment. That combination is compelling as women realize we are present to equip them, unlike abortion clinics that manipulate and deceive.
Ultrasounds are one crucial way to equip women with all the accurate information she needs, so it’s a service we’re continuing to provide because it gives women more information to work with so they can make informed decisions about their pregnancies.
We continue to provide the highest levels of sanitation in our clinic, just as we always have. Adaptations to clinic visits include wearing face masks, social distancing, and limiting visitors into the clinic.
At Caring Network, we haven’t adapted our commitment to continue to be the hands and feet of God, and His faithfulness continues — just as He promises. We’re grateful for our partners like you who help make this life-giving work possible. If you would like to know more about the mission of Caring Network, get involved, or contribute, contact us today!