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Saturday, 30 May 2020
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Trotter House Executive Director Lori DeVillez Trotter House Executive Director Lori DeVillez Trotter House

Austin, TX, pregnancy help center expands with second site to meet the needs of women

As the Austin, TX, metropolitan area grows, the cost of living increases and people seek more affordable areas to live locally, the need for Christ-centered programs to assist women facing unexpected pregnancy has grown as well.

Trotter House of Austin opened a second site in March in Cedar Park, where the population growth has increased by 190.6% since 2000.

The staff and volunteers of Trotter House have made a commitment to provide assistance to the young women in Cedar Park and the surrounding areas of Leander and Liberty Hill, “with the same loving, caring concern that is the hallmark of the Trotter house in Austin,” Executive Director Lori DeVillez said.

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Trotter House (formerly known as Austin Pregnancy Resource Center (APRC)) is a pregnancy medical clinic offering programs and services to assist women and families who find themselves in an unplanned pregnancy or difficult situation.

“I am excited about the new center with our new name and look because it shows that we care, and that God does provide for our every need,” said. “It brings hope and life and joy and peace.”

The new center sports white walls throughout the facility for brightness, except for the sonogram room and bathrooms, which have soothing and homey pale blue colors. Artwork with encouraging themes is also displayed throughout the rooms. 

The hand of God has had obvious involvement in the provision of building funds and equipment for the new location, DeVillez said. 

“I sent an email on Friday, February 7, 2020, giving an update regarding starting construction and the next step needing a sonogram machine,” she wrote in a newsletter to supporters. “Within 2 hours of sending that email God answered by providing a sonogram machine through our lovely partners, Agape Pregnancy Resource Center in Round Rock, TX! I stand amazed at how God provides and how very generous His people are!”

The new name “Trotter House” came about from a desire to make a stronger commitment to serving University of Texas students. 

The center strategic plan states, “We decided in order to draw more students a name with ‘House’ (feeling of warmth and safety) in it would make a huge difference. While keeping our focus on saving lives, both physical lives and eternal lives, God is bringing more and more tools for us to use to reach those in need.”

The name Trotter also pays homage to Lilias Trotter, a woman whose life made many contributions to the Kingdom of God, DeVillez said.

“I believe this is the kind of life we live with the heart and soul of the mission of the APRC,” she said. “As our days and times are changing many more challenges have come our way.”

“I believe we must be much more strategic and wise in all that we are doing to reach those in need. We must use every tool made available to us and not hold back,” she continued. “We must build a culture of life for such a time as this! This is what reminds me of the life of Lilias Trotter.”

DeVillez founded the original center 15 years ago after seven years of prayer. 

“There was no pregnancy resource center located near the University of Texas campus, and I believed it was vital that there be a center to assist those in need, especially the students,” she said. “The University of Texas has an enrollment of over 50,000 students and 20,000 international students, and there were abortion facilities surrounding the campus but no pregnancy center.”

It didn’t seem possible at first from a human perspective, she recalled. Many community leaders even discouraged DeVillez from opening a location near the university campus, saying that it would never happen and urging her to try East Austin instead. 

“My heart was (with) the university,” she said, “so I stopped talking to people and took all of my heart’s desire in prayer to the Lord.” 

This first location in west campus at the university opened on January 16, 2005. 

Since then, DeVillez and the center have assisted in opening several other centers in the area by helping them file their own 501(c)(3) non-profit status. Now, there are 19 pregnancy centers located in the Central Texas area.

“I envision enlarging our territory to assist even more but in very new and different ways,” said DeVillez. “I believe we must be very creative in our strategies. We must seek the Lord for His desires and His ways which are far above ours. I believe we must think outside the box especially in these days.”

Tweet This: “I envision enlarging our territory to assist even more but in very new and different ways” Trotter House executive director Lori DeVillez

To that end, DeVillez and Trotter House look forward to meeting with churches, schools and non-profit organizations in the area around its news center, to engage the community and foster the life movement.

More information about Trotter House is available at the center’s website: trotterhouse.org.

Sarah Bowler

Sarah is a freelance writer & editor with a passion for discipleship. She is the author of Bathsheba’s Responsibility in Light of Narrative Analysis, contributor to Vindicating the Vixens, and contributing editor for The Evangelism Study Bible. She received her Master of Theology Degree from Dallas Theological Seminary. Currently, she and her husband Ben reside in North Texas with their children and frequently find themselves daydreaming of snow and Chicago style pizza. Connect with Sarah at SarahBowler.com.

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