On July 24, Heartbeat of Miami became the first-ever pregnancy help organization to earn WORLD Magazine's Hope Award for Effective Compassion. With voting ending Monday, Sept. 14, the three-location pregnancy help medical clinic has the chance to take home $25,000 as the national honorees of the 10th annual distinction.
One of four finalists in for the Hope Award, Heartbeat of Miami started in 2007 as an initiative of Heartbeat International, and added its third location in August. In July, 2013, the organization relocated its original clinic to a former abortion facility—which had once belonged to the mother of Clinic Director Jeanne Pernia. Pernia and Executive Director Martha Avila are both members of the founding team.
"Miami-Dade County is No. 1 in our nation, per capita, in abortions," Avila said in an Aug. 29 interview with Newsmax TV's J.D. Hayworth. "Even though Hispanics and African-Americans are a minority, they form the majority of abortions in our country. That's where our clinics are located—in the minority areas. We see 15-20 women a day at each one of our clinics [not including the new clinic], and out of these women, the majority of them come afraid, confused. They don't know what to do. We are here to offer them two options. Over 92 percent of them are choosing life."
Heartbeat of Miami operates three of the 1,041 free pregnancy help medical clinics in the United States, and compliments its ultrasound services with other free services, including pregnancy testing, one-on-one counseling and parenting classes. In 2013, the first-ever baby and mother saved from abortion by Heartbeat of Miami, Marella and Mapi, told their story at Heartbeat International's Babies Go to Congress in Washington, D.C.
Click here to vote for Heartbeat of Miami as the 2015 Hope Award for Effective Compassion.