Pregnancy care center opens in Clearwater
A new center that assists young and new mothers in the Midvalley area opened Monday.The Life Choices Pregnancy Care Center in Clearwater is the second expansion of the Aiken Pregnancy Care Center after the Wagener center opened several years ago. Steps hustling on the hardwood floors echoed in the hallways as volunteers made the finishing touches to the new center. The walls of the center were painted a fresh mint green and tan with racks nailed upon them containing stacks of informative brochures. Aiken Pregnancy Care Center Executive Director Jennifer Feemster said that the center is a Christian non-profit that is funded strictly by local churches and individual donations. The center offers free pregnancy tests, prenatal and parenting classes, limited ultrasound services and material assistance.Mothers who take the classes earn credit that allows them to shop in the "mommy closet," which is filled with a variety of baby supplies.The pregnancy center is also a pro-life facility, Feemster said. In 2009, more than 400 abortions took place in Aiken County and Feemster said that the center wants to see that statistic change."We strive to bring that number down by offering an alternative to abortion," Feemster said.Feemster has been with the center since 2006 and said that many women were coming from the Midvalley area to the Aiken Pregnancy Care Center for assistance. She said that displayed a need for a center in that area, so she spoke about the issue and a prospective facility at the Lakeside Baptist Church in Clearwater. Lakeside later contacted Feemster, notifying her of a vacant building and with the assistance of Heights Church, also in Clearwater, the center was completed within two months. Hollie Roberts, Kayla Baxley-Wittle and Crystal Waller were all working on putting a new crib together at the center on Monday. All are fairly new volunteers to the center and agreed that the center is a sort of ministry that will help new mothers."It's a good cause to help out the young ladies and lead them the right way," Waller said.Feemster said that the center helps women prepare for motherhood with faith and guidance."Our main goal is when these clients come in, we share with them the love of Christ," Feemster said. "By doing that, they can make better choices in their lives."On Sept. 10 at 10 a.m., the community is invited to an open house and prayer dedication at the center which is located at 4629 Jefferson Davis Highway in Clearwater. Feemster said donations are welcome, especially baby items like diapers and wipes or office supplies.The center will be open Monday through Wednesday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Thursday from 9 a.m. to noon. The center's 24-hour line number is 649-9890. Contact Amy Banton at email@example.com.