“You Have Been a Light in a Very Dark Tunnel”


During the pandemic lockdown, Amber (not her real name) stood outside an abortion clinic desperately pondering what to do about the “CLOSED” sign on the door.  She began frantically searching for help on the internet and found Thrive.  She called and spoke with Gina, one of Thrive’s nurses.  Gina walked Amber through her options and extended love and compassion while sharing honest truths.  By the end of the call, the nurse had calmed her fears.  Amber thanked Nurse Gina and said, “You have been a light in a very dark tunnel.”

There are many stories like Amber’s, of women impacted during the pandemic, and Thrive is thankful to Vitae and its donors for making these life-saving services possible.

“Vitae helped us prepare for this moment by boosting our online presence through Google ads and by helping us build a website packed with key search terms to reach women considering abortion,” Thrive Dallas Executive Director Mary Jayne Fogerty stated.

During the stay-at-home orders, women with unplanned pregnancies were still able to find Thrive and receive counseling throughout.  Thrive continued providing free services via virtual appointments until they re-opened in May.

“Our nurses kept up-to-date on all the open medical facilities, social services, and clinics in the area.  In such a time of uncertainty, clients were relieved to get connected to the resources they needed for life and pregnancy,” Fogerty noted.

Thrive served 204 abortion-minded women through phone calls and virtual visits while their clinic doors were closed for six weeks.  A large majority of them found Thrive through the work of Vitae’s research-based digital strategies.

There was also a worry about clients who were early in their pregnancies when they chose life but were unable to come for follow up appointments due to stay-at-home orders.  Netta was one of those clients.  Netta was considering abortion in February when she found Thrive via the internet.

“I’m just not ready financially or emotionally to be a mom,” she had said. “I don’t want my body to get fat, and I am scared to tell my mom because it goes against what our family believes about waiting until you’re married.”

Devonte, the father of her baby, is her boyfriend of several years and wants to marry her.  Both were raised in the church.  When they returned for another sonogram, they had decided to move ahead with the pregnancy and were eager to prepare for parenthood.  Before they could come back for Earn While You Learn courses, coronavirus arrived in North Texas.

Thrive Clinic Services Director Meredith Hall contacted them, and they said the baby was developing well, but the couple felt a bit overwhelmed about their finances.  At their consent, Hall visited them where they work at a local fast-food restaurant.

“I got to bring them back a note of encouragement and a grocery gift card,” Hall stated.  “They were so thankful to Thrive and wanted to take a photo to show off the new baby bump.”

Eventually Thrive began seeing clients who became pregnant during the pandemic.  Many of them are further along in their pregnancies than their typical pre-pandemic clients because they put off looking for help.  The further along clients are in their pregnancies, the more reluctant they are to get an abortion because they face a more invasive procedure.

In May, 63 abortion-determined clients came in for appointments after finding Thrive on the Internet through its website and landing pages built by Vitae.

“We are so thankful to Vitae.  The expertise of their marketing team and their Google ad support have helped us tremendously.  Because of them, we can stay competitive in the online realm where we are trying to reach abortion-minded women first with the hope of Christ,” Fogerty stated.