Displaying items by tag: babies go to congress

Evalynn and Hezekiah


Hezekiah — Born October 2021

Born to a crack-addicted and alcoholic mother, Evalynn was removed from her mother’s custody at the age of only 10. She had her first abortion at 19 and at 24 she almost died from a second abortion that led to her having an emergency D&C three days later.

At the age of 30, she found herself pregnant out of wedlock again.

“I was already a single mother of a 3-year-old and I was attempting to finish my Bachelor’s degree. I had no idea how I was going to support myself, two children, and finish college.”

Evalynn felt alone as the father of her baby was encouraging her to have an abortion and she had no one else to support her. Not knowing if she was going to choose to have an abortion or keep the baby, she reached out to the Women's Center of Ohio for an ultrasound.

That ultrasound changed her entire life, as it made the pregnancy real to her and empowered her to choose life for her baby! That choice also led to choosing life for herself as two months after that she surrendered her life to Jesus Christ.

Today, baby Hezekiah is a year old. Evalynn earned her bachelor’s degree and then married shortly after!

“In this age, the world tells women that to be happy and to have a successful life we must abort our unborn babies. That is the furthest thing from the truth! I have never lived a life that is so fulfilled physically, mentally, and spiritually. God used this baby's life to save mine and I am forever grateful!”

Support the efforts of pregnancy help organizations today so that moms like Evalynn are encouraged and equipped to choose life for their little ones.

sq Hezekiah Hairston

Baby Hezekiah


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Danielle and Lei’Lani


At 20 years old, Danielle was terrified to find herself staring at two pink lines on a pregnancy test. She was immersed in a world of drugs, alcohol and risky behavior that she used to numb the pain of years of abuse and assault.

“I knew that I was carrying life - that it wasn’t just me anymore,” she said, “but I had no money, and my family refused to support me.”

That is when found a local maternity home, the Paul Stefan Foundation. It was here when she was welcomed with open arms and spent the next five years learning valuable life skills and gaining the education needed to get a good job for herself and her growing baby girl.

Danielle describes those years as the “hardest of my entire life, but they transformed me and my future in an incredible way.” She has remained involved with the home ever since, and today she serves her community as a foster care social worker in the Virginia Department of Social Services.

“So many women resort to abortion because they think it’s their only option, or that their baby will hinder their goals. I wish I could comfort those women, and tell them how keeping my baby motivated me to achieve every single goal that I set my mind on. I’d tell them that I named my daughter Lei’Lani, which means royal child of heaven. Why? I tell anyone who will listen – God sent her to me to save my life.”

Support the efforts of pregnancy help organizations today so that moms like Danielle are encouraged and equipped to choose life for their little ones. 

danielle and lei lani

Lei'Lani and Danielle

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Kylie and Zoe


Kylie* was a mom of two and had just started a new relationship when she found out that she was pregnant. She felt that she wasn’t ready, and even though her boyfriend was excited to be a dad, Kylie decided to have an abortion.

She quickly regretted this decision, especially as she and her boyfriend struggled to get pregnant again over the following years. She was overjoyed to find out she was pregnant in the summer of 2019 with a baby boy.

And then, when her son was seven months old, she found out that she was pregnant again with twins. Kylie felt overwhelmed and that she couldn’t go through with the pregnancy as her boyfriend was out of town quite a bit. The financial strain of raising five children on her own was just too much.

Hoping to get more answers, Kylie reached out to Real Options. She was still on the fence about getting an abortion, but after discussing the many resources that were available she realized she had all the support she needed!

Sadly, one of the twins passed before birth. Real Options was there for Kylie at that time as well, so she knew that she wasn’t alone. They provided her with counseling services and a baby shower. They gave her the support that she needed and became the family that she didn’t have.

“Now that my boyfriend is temporarily away, I still don’t feel alone. I know I have my family at Real Options and they are only one call away…If I didn’t come to Real Options, I would not have chosen life for my daughter. For that, we are forever grateful!”

*Name changed for privacy

Support the efforts of pregnancy help organizations today so that moms like Kiley are encouraged and equipped to choose life for their little ones. 


Baby Zoe

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U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst to Speak at Heartbeat International's 2018 Babies Go to Congress

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Monday | Jan. 15

Contact: Jay Hobbs, Director of Communications and Marketing
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WASHINGTON, D.C. — As four mothers and their babies visit Capitol Hill to tell lawmakers how pregnancy centers changed their lives for the better Thursday, Jan. 18, they’ll also have the opportunity to hear directly from U.S. Senator Joni Ernst, at Heartbeat International’s 16th Babies Go to Congress.

A Republican from Iowa, Sen. Ernst spoke at the 2016 and 2017 March for Life and is a key sponsor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act—which ends most abortions at 20 weeks and beyond and is expected to go before the Senate the week of this year’s March for Life, Jan. 19.

Each of the four mothers participating in Babies Go to Congress overcame significant challenges to choose life in the midst of an unexpected pregnancy, thanks to the help of a locally funded and operated pregnancy center affiliated with Heartbeat International.

“We are honored to welcome Sen. Ernst to this year’s Babies Go to Congress,” Jor-El Godsey, Heartbeat International president, said. “Like pregnancy help leaders and volunteers at the local level, Sen. Ernst puts her pro-life beliefs into compassionate action. Every woman deserves the compassionate help and hope she needs to make the healthiest choice for everyone involved in an unexpected pregnancy.”

Tweet This: @joniernst to headline event #PlannedParenthood could never pull off. #prolife #whywemarch @HeartbeatIntl

An event abortion industry leader Planned Parenthood would never dream of pulling off, Babies Go to Congress has brought 155 mothers and their children into congressional offices since Heartbeat International took its initial group to the nation’s Capitol in 2009. Overall, mothers with their children in tow have visited 315 congressional offices representing 25 states. 

This year’s group is made up of mothers and children from North Carolina, Ohio, Missouri and Florida. One of the mothers, Kelsey Hedges from Missouri, refused abortion when the father of her twin girls pressured her to end their lives in the womb. 

Thursday, Jan. 18, Hedges and her 15-month-old daughters will tell their story to the Senate offices of Republican Roy Blunt and Democrat Claire McCaskill, as well as the House offices of Republicans Blaine Luetkemeyer and Jason Smith. 

“I was in love from the moment I laid eyes on both of them,” Hedges writes. “They are such a blessing to my life, and bring so much joy to myself and the rest of my family. I thank God often for my girls and for Pregnancy Resource Center of Rolla who saved me and my pregnancy.”

Click here to learn more about the 2018 Babies Go to Congress participants and follow their journey to Capitol Hill. 

7 Moms to Tell D.C. Lawmakers Why They Chose Life

"This is one event Planned Parenthood could never dream of pulling off."

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Monday | December 12, 2016
Contact: Jay Hobbs, Director of Communications and Marketing
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COLUMBUS, OHIO – In what it hails as the most powerful pro-life event on Capitol Hill, Heartbeat International is bringing seven mothers—and their children—to Washington, D.C. this January to tell elected officials how they chose life with the help of a community-funded pregnancy center.

The event, “Babies Go to Congress,” takes place Jan. 26, the morning prior to the annual March for Life, and is Heartbeat International’s 15th such visit to the nation’s capitol since 2009. In the previous trips, 113 mothers and their children have visited a total of 265 offices—including those of both Democrats and Republicans.

In each visit, a mother who has rejected abortion with the help of a pregnancy help organization has the opportunity to tell her story, alongside both her child and the staff from the center that helped her choose life.

“This is one event Planned Parenthood could never dream of pulling off,” Heartbeat International president Jor-El Godsey said. “Pregnancy help centers empower women to make the healthiest choice for everyone involved in an unexpected pregnancy. This is a powerful platform for us to both show and tell the truth that pregnancy help centers are good for America.”

The group this year is made up of two mothers from Ohio, as well as one each from North Carolina, Missouri, Arizona, Texas and Wyoming. Though six of the mothers are bringing with them children 4 years old and younger, one mother—Nikki Pinkley from Branson, Mo.—is bringing her 14-year-old daughter to the event.

Together, Nikki and her daughter, Alexis, illustrate the positive life-long impact of that nation’s 2,600 pregnancy help centers.

Nikki was raised in the church and had recently graduated high school when she found out she was pregnant. Finding help at Options Pregnancy Clinic in Branson, she not only chose life for Alexis, but the staff at Options encouraged her to keep pursuing her education and career goals.

Today, Nikki is a closing in on a decade as a licensed professional counselor and is working on her doctoral degree in psychology.

“My hope is that every young woman facing an unplanned pregnancy will find the help she needs to face the challenges of being a single mom,” Nikki, who later married, said. “It’s not easy, but I am living proof that the future is what you make of it. Sometimes you just need someone to believe in you. I found the help I needed, plus a lot of inspiration at Options Pregnancy Clinic.”

About Heartbeat International

Heartbeat International is the first network of pro-life pregnancy help organizations founded in the U.S. (1971), and the largest network in the world. With 2,100 affiliated pregnancy help locations—including pregnancy help medical clinics (with ultrasound), resource centers, maternity homes, and adoption agencies—Heartbeat serves on all six inhabited continents to provide alternatives to abortion. For more information, see www.HeartbeatInternational.org.

Capitol Hill, Get Ready to Meet Christiana

13-year-old saved from abortion to meet with law-makers at Babies Go to Congress

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Monday | December 22, 2014
Contact: Jay Hobbs, Director of Communications and Marketing
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WASHINGTON, D.C. – A little child shall lead them. This well-loved statement will get plenty of airtime this Christmas season, but the phrase may end up becoming the theme of Heartbeat International's Babies Go to Congress® when the most powerful prolife effort on Capitol Hill takes place January 22-23, 2015.

An entourage of five former pregnancy help center clients and their children, rescued from the threat of abortion, will be highlighted by 12-year-old Christiana Pablo from Bowie Crofton Pregnancy Center in Bowie, Md., who is already blossoming into an outgoing champion for the life-affirming support offered by the more than 2,400 pregnancy help organizations rescuing 3,000 babies each week in the United States alone.

Faced with an unexpected pregnancy, Christiana's mother, Victoria Chan-Pablo—only 15-years-old at the time—found the support she needed to welcome Christiana into the world at Bowie Crofton Pregnancy Center. Her eldest daughter has been joyfully repaying that debt, sparking fundraising and community-building efforts for the center, which has served over 24,500 women and families since opening its doors in 1982.

"I say that Bowie Crofton Pregnancy Center saved my daughter's life because they opened up our eyes and gave us the knowledge, the strength and the encouragement to help us carry out our decision in keeping our baby," Victoria said.

Christiana and Victoria will have a chance to tell their story to their elected congressional representatives, along with centers from Ohio (Pregnancy Decision Health Centers), North Carolina (LifeLine Pregnancy Help Center), Indiana (Matrix Pregnancy Resource Center), and Arizona (Living Hope Women's Center). It is the first time in the history of the program that North Carolina will be represented.

Since beginning the program in 2009, a total of 109 women and children representing over 50 centers have visited 222 congressional offices from 23 different states.

"It's difficult to imagine a more empowering experience for a woman than Babies Go to Congress," Peggy Hartshorn, Ph.D., President of Heartbeat International, said. "This is an event that drives to the very heart of what life-affirming work is all about: every mother feeling loved and supported, both during her pregnancy and into parenthood."

How You Can Make the Biggest Impact this Election Season

Mid-term election season. The idea may strike more placid acceptance than the inspiring, engaging sense of civic involvement of a presidential election year.BGTC Email adSmall

But, as champions of life with our citizenship in two worlds, even a mid-term election should call us to attention, action, and mobilization on behalf of our fellow countrymen—both born and pre-born.

This is why we make it a priority to vote our beliefs, off-year or not. We realize lives, futures, and legacies are at stake in our communities, states, and nation. These elected officials represent not only you, but your organization's staff, volunteers, donors... and clients.

In addition to your vote, your elected representatives need to know the truth. Each of them needs to hear from you and your clients—their constituents—the truth that Pregnancy Help Organizations are Good for America.

[Click here for Top 5 Benefits of Babies Go to Congress]

When a pregnancy help organization succeeds, lives are saved. That's an undeniable reality. A beautiful reality. A miracle. Something your elected representative needs to know.

That's the goal of Heartbeat's Babies Go to Congress, taking place January 20-22, 2015. It's your opportunity to sit down with your elected officials and not only tell the story of your organization's life-saving work, but—side-by-side with a client and her baby—to show the story of rescue that happens every day in organizations like yours.

Since 2009, a total of 109 women and children from over 50 organizations in 22 states have visited 222 congressional offices.

The babies are at it again January 20-22, 2015. Click here to find out how you and your organization can get involved.


Fresh from Washington D.C.

Fresh from Washington D.C.

by Peggy Hartshorn, Heartbeat International, President
(from Take Heart Volume 2, Issue 2)

I’m excited to share with you our encouraging news “fresh from Washington, D.C.”! I spent almost a week in our nation’s capital for meetings with national pro-life leaders, for the annual March for Life, and for our Babies Go To Congress™ (BGTC) event. What a magnificent week! Click here for a quick picture album of our March for Life team.

First, our BGTC was full of glory. We took several Heartbeat affiliates and their clients with babies – five Heartbeat teams totaling 27 people – to meet with to key Congressional representatives in 23 offices. We delivered the message that “pregnancy centers are good for America.” And our mothers were able to tell their stories as well and present to their elected officials a copy of the powerful report A Passion to Serve, A Vision for Life (researched by Family Research Council with the help of Heartbeat and other organizations in our movement). Walking the halls of Congress with our affiliates, mothers, and babies, was an honor and blessing for me personally.

Ripples, turning into currents, as a result of this trip will be many! Here are excerpts from a thank you letter to Heartbeat from just one of our mothers who came with her husband and baby:

“I wanted to thank you and Heartbeat International for the love and commitment to healthy babies and families you showed to me and every lady in attendance (and the thousands of others that benefit from all that Heartbeat does). I personally praise God for you!

Anthony and I experienced so much while in Washington, DC, I am still processing/taking all of it in… I am a counseling student and I will be obtaining my School Counselor Certification. After my professors heard of my pending trip and involvement in BGTC, they advised me to submit a proposal to present at this year's Illinois School Counselor Association Annual Conference… School Counselors in Chicago need to be able to "Connect the Dots" and know about community resources that their students may need.

I must share that before coming to Washington, DC I was not 100% committed to the pro-life movement. Although I do not believe in abortion and would never advise or financially back someone in their decision to get an abortion, I just was not comfortable in completely taking that right away from women either. However, I was challenged to really think about not only what I believe but WHO I believe in.”

I would estimate that about 350,000-400,000 people came to Washington for the March this year, probably the largest in recent history. Perhaps 50 percent of the Marchers were young people. A Washington Post columnist went to the March thinking he would see a “quaint” gathering with a hopeless cause. He admitted his surprise when he found otherwise! An excellent column by Cal Thomas (January 27), highlights the youth pro-life movement, and mentions TWICE the role of our pregnancy centers: “Thousands of pregnancy centers are winning a new generation to their views.”

I hope that each of you will experience in 2010 the personal “refreshment” I experienced during this intensely pro-pregnancy center week, feeling the Hand of God at work in the halls of Congress and at the March for Life. Clearly, our united labor, gifts, prayers, and strategic initiatives are winning our fellow Americans over to the truth and goodness of our Cause.

Learn more about BGTC at HeartbeatInternational.org.

Return to Take Heart Volume 2, Issue 2.

A Dozen, A Hundred, and the Power of Two


In the teeth of a bitterly cold week in Washington, D.C., Heartbeat International brought along eight moms and eight babies to deliver a single message to their elected representatives.

Their message? Pregnancy help centers are good for America!

This year’s entourage was the largest contingent Heartbeat has ever brought to the nation’s capitol, bringing the total number of moms and babies to over 100 throughout our 12 trips since we initiated Babies Go to Congress® in 2009.

While a look at big numbers like these (plus the more than 200 congressional offices we’ve visited!) certainly provides a breath-taking view of God’s goodness, no number quite drives the point home like… Two.

That’s because, every day in the pregnancy help centers, medical clinics, maternity homes, and non-profit adoption agencies Heartbeat International serves, the lives of women and their unborn children are being rescued, protected, and preserved… Two lives at a time.

Take Diana and Jaycee, for example. Single and 19, Diana felt as if her “whole world stopped” as the pregnancy test read Positive.

Afraid to tell her family and desperate to find a way out, abortion was a real option for Diana’s mind as she typed in the words, “pregnant and scared” into her Google search engine. What she found was a nearby Heartbeat affiliate pregnancy center whose after-hours phone number routed automatically to Option Line®, Heartbeat’s 24/7 pregnancy helpline (800-712-HELP).

Patiently listening to Diana’s story, the caring voice on the other end of the line helped schedule an appointment for the following week at the pregnancy help center.

In Diana’s words:

I went into (the center) knowing there were other options like an abortion and thinking that was my only way out. My thoughts of having a baby were overshadowed with unanswered questions and I felt like I had hit a dead end.

That day now four years behind her, Diana was all smiles as she shared her story with her Rhode Island congressional offices in Washington.
Of course, she didn’t come alone, as she was joined by her 3-year-old son, Jaycee, whose life was both spared and nurtured because Diana found the emotional support and practical resources she desperately needed through Option Line and Heartbeat’s network of life-saving local partners.

Like Diana, every woman facing an unexpected or difficult pregnancy desperately needs the emotional support and practical resources that only pregnancy help organizations provide.

Over 100 moms and babies thank you… Two at a time.



by Jay Hobbs, Communications Assistant


Stories of Lives Saved

Click Here to Discover Lives Saved through the Abortion Pill Rescue Network 

Each story below represents a woman's experience with one of our pregnancy help organizations. One-by-one, these women overcame challenges through the help of the pregnancy help movement. Receiving support and care, and in some cases, even a roof over their heads, they know the value of pregnancy centers and maternity homes because their lives were changed by their service. And now, they share their personal stories so that no woman feels so alone she feels abortion is her only option. These families champion life!
































Jessica H.












Jessica G.








Ahna and Garrett














Laura L.












Michelle M.




April H.


Emily B.




Brittany and Nathaniel

Delia Jo 2


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