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Walk for Life set May 13 in Elmer Thomas Park

The Pregnancy Resource Center of Southwest Oklahoma will host its annual Walk for Life May 13 at Elmer Thomas Park.

Registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. and the walk will follow at 9 a.m. The walk is one of two fundraisers the center hosts each year; the other is its annual fall banquet. The center provides free services for expecting mothers and fathers, including pregnancy tests; ultrasounds; counseling for options  parenting, adoption and abortion, although the center does not make referrals for abortions; and its Earn While You Learn program in which expecting parents take classes to earn points for baby items. The center also offers a men's ministry and a post-abortive study for mothers who have had abortions.

According to Willoughby, expecting parents who use the services the center provides are 95 percent more likely to choose life.

"That's a powerful statistic that we have," Willoughby said. "And, of course, some are going to choose abortion, and those who do, we are here to help them in their time of recovery and grief. We're here for all women, wherever they're at."

Willoughby has seen families from all walks of life take part in the services offered by the center. From new mothers to mothers having a third child, and from unexpected pregnancies to expected, she said the center is here to serve all women and families.

"We do support pregnancies, planned or unplanned," Willoughby said. "We support families. We support all those that God sends to us."

The funds raised from the walk go toward the center's client services and expenses. According to Willoughby, the center is a nonprofit and does not receive funding from the government. She said the center's funding comes from donors, churches, its two annual fundraisers and foundations.

"It's really important to raise the funds we need so we can focus on taking care of our clients instead of begging for money, fretting about money, so we can focus on ministry and taking care of those who come to us," Willoughby said.

Those interested in participating in the center's Walk for Life can register online, at prclawton.org, by phone, 536-4040, or the day of the walk. Once registered, walkers are encouraged to collect sponsorships and pledges. Each walker who collects $200 or more will receive a free T-shirt. Last year, Willoughby said, the walk had around 200 participants.

The Lawton Constitution

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