When “Rosa” went to the Fort Worth Pregnancy Center last year, she was seriously considering abortion. The young immigrant woman didn’t know anyone except that man with whom she had become intimate with and whose child she now carried. The baby’s father pressured her to abort, but deep in her heart, Rosa (a pseudonym) didn’t want to, especially after viewing the ultrasound.
“What choice do I have?” Rosa asked her advocate. “I don’t know anyone here; I have no family. I only have the man I’m with.”
Staff members with Fort Worth Pregnancy Center found various resources to help their client, including a church whose members came alongside the young woman, helping her to obtain a car and providing a faith-based ‘family’ upon whom she could rely, a community organization that found housing for her, and center donors who provided maternity clothes. Rosa found the courage to choose life for her baby despite pressure from the child’s father because she no longer felt alone, said Jamie Bryant, Development director for the Fort Worth Pregnancy Center.
Rosa’s courage came from learning she wasn’t as alone as she thought.
“As all these resources started coming in, all of the reasons why she couldn’t say ‘yes ‘to this baby started disappearing,” Bryant said. “Her situation is unique, but I think it’s the overall story that women, most of them, in their heart prefer to keep their babies and choose life. But they have very real obstacles. So, if you can address those obstacles and help them see they are not alone and that someone is willing to help them overcome those challenges, they can follow their heart to choosing life.”
Helping those who feel alone
The sense of feeling alone and the idea of not obtaining their lifegoals drive many women to choose abortion, Bryant said.
“Women feel alone in this decision, whether they have family around or not. So, when they have pressure, whether it’s from another person or from their circumstances, they feel as if they’re facing it alone,” she said. “So many of the fears they have are based on things that can be addressed and eliminated.”
We’re actually interested in eliminating those fears and obstacles so that the pregnancy is no longer a crisis,” said Bryant. “But they feel like, because of their circumstances, they have no other choice. So, if we can get these women into the center to find out all the help that’s available and actually help them address their challenges, then the vast majority of them do [choose life].”
When a pregnancy center comes alongside a woman and offers services and resources during and beyond the initial appointment, feelings and minds can, and often do, change.
“We have a compassionate care team that follows up with clients during the course of their pregnancy and beyond,” Bryant said.
Strategic outreach to abortion-minded women
Focusing on women like Rosa who believe abortion is their only choice due to pressure from others or from circumstances motivates Bryant and the Fort Worth staff. This focus, reaching the abortion-minded woman, came about after a strategic meeting among staff during autumn 2022, and that mission reaped large dividends in 2023.
“We made the decision to focus on at-risk women,” said Bryant. “We had a goal of increasing our services to these women to 70 percent this first year. We increased by 250 percent [by early December].”
The biggest change came through advertising and increasing the budget for that work.
“We doubled our ad-spend for Google Ad words, and we hired a new advertising agency this year,” Bryant said. “They do a great job in helping us manage those Google campaigns, and then increasing the budget is especially important, in particular in the Google Ad words space – if you’re not in the first few listings, you’re just not going to get seen. A woman is most likely to reach out to the first three to five listings on the page.”
Prior to this new strategy and focus, Bryant said only about 30 percent of their clients were abortion-minded. As of December 2023, 550 women at-risk for abortion were served in 2023, and 87 percent of those women chose life.
“That’s 448 babies saved,” Bryant said. “It’s a credit to the Lord first and foremost. It’s really been quite remarkable, and we’re just overjoyed with what the Lord has done!”
With the changed landscape for abortion in Texas since the fall of Roe v. Wade, staff at the center began shifting to a “value-added” perspective and message.
“Before you travel out-of-state … or self-manage your abortion [through ordering pills on the internet], come see us,” Bryant explained. “We can educate you on procedures, what to expect, risks, recovery time…. We can evaluate your pregnancy medically via ultrasound to confirm how far along you are, to assess whether the pregnancy appears to be viable, for an ectopic pregnancy … things like that. That message was really resonating with those abortion-minded women.”
Tweet This: “We have a compassionate care team that follows up with clients during the course of their pregnancy and beyond”-Fort Worth Pregnancy Center
Several other changes came to the center this past year. For example, a remodel of the building, paid for by a family foundation, provides a warm and welcoming space, Bryant said.
“It’s really gorgeous and welcoming to clients – it feels like a day spa!” she said. “A woman feels valued from the moment she walks through the door, and when she walks in before having an abortion, we’re able to speak into her circumstances with truth and hope.”
A men’s program took root in 2023. The center employs a male staff member to run the program and men from the community volunteer their time to serve fathers of the babies.
“Every day of the week we have men available here to meet with the fathers of the babies,” Bryant said. “They are the biggest influencer on a woman’s decision, and women say that – their partner’s voice is the biggest influence. Being able to serve them makes a big difference.”
The Gospel is presented to those willing to listen, she added, which also provides a positive benefit and outcome.
“We see a lot of professions of faith, and we connect them to local churches,” said Bryant. “We have more than 20 churches that we partner with.”
“We are really growing as a center,” she added. “The Lord has really directed those steps.”
The center's staff expects growth to continue.
“The Lord leads us step-by-step … until we crash into His will, which is always bigger and better than we can imagine,” Bryant said.
For example, the center’s revenue has doubled since Bryant started working at the center nearly six years ago.
“That opens to the door for the things the Lord wants us to do,” she said.
Also, she was the only Spanish-speaker on staff when she first began her duties as development director, and therefore, she met with Spanish-speaking women.
“I was taking all the Spanish-speaking clients, and now we have six staff members who are bilingual,” Bryant said. “We have Spanish-speaking appointments every day of the week.”
Sixty percent of the center’s clientele are Hispanic, and 20 percent of the clients speak only Spanish.
Reaching more abortion-minded women
Reaching those abortion-minded clients is the primary goal of the Fort Worth Pregnancy Center, yet Bryant knows there is also value for centers who assist any pregnant woman in need.
“I am grateful for pregnancy centers who want to be a resource for moms that are planning on parenting but are having challenging life situations,” she said. “We refer a lot of callers who are happy to be pregnant but who happen to have challenges and need that extra help.”
Bryant offered advice for centers like Fort Worth that desire to reach more abortion-minded women.
“If there’s a center who wants to have a primary goal of reaching the abortion-minded woman at her point of decision, you have to invest in the advertising to make that happen,” she said. “You can’t help her if you don’t reach her first. Does she know you are there and what you do? If you’re goal is to truly reach women at risk for abortion, if that’s the primary client you’re wanting to serve, you have to make that investment in Google Ad words. You need to make your board of directors, or whoever approves your budget, understand that if that’s your goal, you have to spend this money.”
She said her center has not received push-back from Google as many other centers have experienced.
“My recommendation to other pregnancy centers is to partner with an [ad] agency that specializes in search advertising for pregnancy centers,” she said. “They’ve really gone through the whole process of figuring out what works, what will be blocked, what won’t, and come up with a formula that will be successful.”