Women’s Resource Center in Gulfport Helps Expectant Mothers
While driving down Cowan Road in Gulfport, many of us see the big white sign saying free pregnancy tests, but the Women’s Resource Center in Gulfport provides a lot more for local mothers and mothers-to-be. Annissa Rude and her husband, Erik, have been going to the center’s parenting classes for eight months to learn everything they can before their little boy arrives. Annissa says, "They educate you on things not to do, or things to do, things that can help you with your soon to be child, or children you already have.”
By attending the classes, the Rudes have learned how to prepare for their bundle of joy, but have also earned points to spend on needed baby items. Tiffany Bell, Director of the Women’s Resource Center, says, "The majority of the ladies, they’ll come, and if they find that their test is positive, they’ll enroll in the Earn While Learn Program, and then with the Earn While Learn Program, they are able to shop in the Mommy and Me Boutique. Each week, they get two dozen of diapers free, a case of wipes as well, clothing, shoes, baby wash."
The center is supported by donations from local businesses and residents. Another key to its success is its volunteers. Bell also says, "They come expecting to give out, but most times they find as they are giving and helping others, that they in turn are receiving. They leave changed."
Both of the couples News 25 spoke with Tuesday say that the resource center is the perfect place for anyone who may believe they are pregnant or have questions about the process. Kassie Jackson, an expectant mother, says, "I definitely, definitely recommend to you girls who are single and dad’s not around."
Erik closes, "It’s honestly something to look forward to every week, with the classes, there is homework that you do, so it’s not something you come to once a week, and it’s out of your mind the rest of the week."
If you’d like to attend the banquet, it will be held on November 6th at 6 p.m. at the Westside Community Center in Gulfport. It is free of charge and will feature dinner, a silent auction, and a guest speaker.