They knew they had to do more to reach vulnerable women searching for abortion. After all, ThriVe Express Savannah sits across the street from Planned Parenthood of Savannah, one of two abortion mills in the city. They just didn’t know how to make that happen.
ThriVe had a board meeting on a Thursday where it was noted they had to find somebody who understood Google, because the abortion battle was going online. They needed help to raise their online presence to the abortion-determined woman. The very next day an email arrived indicating they had been chosen as one of the Vitae Foundation’s Alpha Centers, a marketing research initiative.
“Our prayers had been answered!” stated ThriVe Express Executive Director Paula Kinard.
They say be careful what you pray for, and Kinard knew they had to get ready for big changes. They just had no idea how impactful those changes would be.
“We have definitely seen an increase in patients, especially of abortion-determined women. As hard as that is, we honestly thank God for that! This is exactly where we prayed to be—that last ditch effort between her and the abortion industry,” Kinard noted. “Even though it’s a difficult road, we’d rather be there than absent.”
As an Alpha Center, ThriVe Savannah receives a variety of digital services, worth about $65,000 for a year’s worth of services. Vitae’s Research Application Department takes three decades of Vitae’s proprietary Right Brain research and applies it to targeted pregnancy center websites, ads and social media posts. What is learned from this research initiative will be shared with many centers across the country.
“There is a level of excellence with the work you all do. There is also a level of integrity, it’s just stunning, I mean in every way,” Kinard expressed. “We have seen your work as a huge blessing and an asset. It adds to our workload, but it is also adding to the whole reason why we are here—trying to reach as many women as humanly possible with a message of hope and (abortion) alternatives.”
The latest data show that 41% of pregnancies in Georgia are considered unwanted, according to the Guttmacher Institute, an arm of Planned Parenthood. Kinard noted that when women are faced with an unintended pregnancy, 80% of women believe abortion is their only choice, and 64% are pressured or coerced by a man to abort.
“How is that a choice, and how is that her choice? It is absolutely not!” Kinard stated.
Not too long after Vitae began collaborating with ThriVe Savannah, the pandemic hit. Their mobile unit was forced to close, due to distancing, but their doors remained open. They were, however, limited to one client at a time at the center.
For about six weeks ThriVe Express used their mobile unit in a unique way—as a moving billboard. They had volunteers prepare meals for clients, and they used the mobile unit to deliver those meals. One ThriVe supporter put recipes together (like chicken pot pie and scalloped potatoes) and the groceries to go with them for their clients. That supporter used her stimulus check to help feed women experiencing a very tough time in their life.
The state of Georgia slowly opened back up in May, and ThriVe witnessed encouraging numbers. They saw 55 new clients, more than double the new clients they had in May of 2019. Thirteen women chose life over abortion.
“This is such an answer to prayer. The whole collaboration with Vitae. It’s amazing,” Kinard concluded.