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Crisis Pregnancy Center Carried to Full Term Puts Mom on Path for Bright Future

| December 2, 2019 | 0 Comments | Community

Mom Samrawit Biru with Frances Robin, Founder of Carried to Full Term and Samarawit’s 2-year-old daughter.

Carried To Full Term is a crisis pregnancy center in Haymarket. The nonprofit takes in pregnant women in need and provide a home for the women and their babies until the children reach 2 years of age.

The women and children have a comfortable living environment in a historic home in downtown Haymarket. During that period of time, the mothers are taught to become self-sufficient while simultaneously becoming part of a community.

They must work, attend community house meetings, get off their phones, follow a mentor, set a budget and save money. They get help with childcare and items needed for their children.

Samrawit Biru is one of Carried To Full Term’s success stories. An Ethiopian resident, she came to the United States in 2016 to live with a friend in an Ethiopian neighborhood in D.C. But her friend wanted her to move out before her child was born.

Biru did not have long to find a place to stay. At 7.5 months pregnant, The Gabriel Project said she was too far along to stay with them and instead referred her to Carried to Full Term.

While Biru required some assistance, she had great potential. She was an intelligent, young woman who studied civil engineering for three years in Ethiopia.

As a recent immigrant, Biru had many challenges beyond that of the other mothers. She hardly spoke English and she did not have a driver’s license. “They helped me with everything,” she said.

While she was grateful for gaining a place to live, she admitted that living with other families from different backgrounds was not easy. And there was hard work involved.

“They will give you a schedule. You have to do your chores (including getting up early to do them.) We have a lot of classes. You have to go to church.” They are also encouraged her to find her own groups and interests.

The home requires the women living there to find a job. People help with childcare, which frees up the moms to work. It took Biru six months to get a work permit so she volunteered in the meantime.

Some of the classes were very beneficial such as Dave Ramsey’s finance class. “He taught us to manage our money. That’s the biggest thing.” He required the ladies to make a budget and stick to the budget. They planned for paying for rent, a car, insurance, unexpected expenses.

And Biru is also eternally grateful to have had such a wonderful mentor. “You have to have a mentor. My mentor, she’s like my friend, and all her family is like my family.”

Today, Biru is self-sufficient, living on her own in an apartment in Haymarket. She chose to stay in Haymarket where she met friends and made connections.

The CTFT home was also a nurturing environment for her daughter who is a happy, well-adjusted and an intelligent 2-year-old. She never wanted for anything and grew up with attention from many adults and was saved from trauma at a young age.

Biru recommends anyone who finds themselves in a similar situation consider Carried To Full Term. “For me, it changed my life. I was in the middle of nowhere and I am in my own house now. Everybody wants to help you. They are happy to help.”

Frances Robin who founded the house said there is no average woman who comes to CTFT. They all have different experiences. Most women are around 30. They may be single, fleeing a bad relationship or family. They come from various states.

And Biru’s experience is not representative of every woman. “It’s up to them whether or not they make life-changing decisions.” She saw Biru was ready to do the work. “She was committed to it, and she is a great mom. She is a great human being and really smart.”

Biru stays in touch with CTFT and volunteers at the home. She is working at a local day-care/preschool and is taking IT classes. She hopes to transfer her civil engineering credits to George Mason University to earn her degree in that field.

“With all her experience, her education, and nowhere to go,” said Robin. “No home, no family, just potential. Carried To Full Term is an organization that comes in the form of people, and the women go on to realize their potential.”

She said success for pregnant women in crisis is possible. When women are given the tools, support, and resources, they are capable to making positive life changes. This community has done just that. “The Haymarket/Gainesville community has overwhelmingly answered that call said Robin.

“The wonderful thing about it is, people responded to the need. They have put their skills and experiences to work for the families at Carried To Full Term. It is not one person’s effort. It would be a discredit to all the people who make it happen and make it work.”

Carried To Full Term is holding its Annual Gala: Life is a Gift on Dec. 7. The organization is selling tickets and still looking for sponsors. All the proceeds will support the house and the women and children living in it. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/carried-to-full-terms-life-is-a-gift-tickets-76989869773

For more information about Carried to Full Term visit their website carriedtofullterm.org.

© 2019, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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