THERE will be plenty of room at one guest house this Christmas after a Brisbane safe house successfully transitioned its last live-in mother into stable accommodation.
Pregnancy Crisis is a volunteer-run service that provides practical support, including emergency accommodation, for women with unplanned or unexpected pregnancies.
During the pandemic the organisation extended its crisis accommodation period for as long as a mother needed to find a stable alternative.
This included three babies who were born around Christmas Day last year.
Pregnancy Crisis’ chief executive officer, who cannot be named for security reasons, said the mums who had lived in the safe house during the pandemic left as stronger women because they had the support to raise their babies.
“To be able go through the joy of having their baby really transforms women,” the CEO said.
“To see them blossom is a beautiful thing.”
The safe house is now welcoming a new intake of vulnerable mums who have reached out for support to raise their babies.
Outside the safe house, Pregnancy Crisis continued to support other mums who did not require crisis accommodation with COVID-safe care packages and, as restrictions eased, visiting women who needed emotional support.
On top of offering practical help, many volunteers keep women going through difficult pregnancies in their daily prayers.
It will be no different on December 12, which marks the organisation’s end-of-year Mass on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the patroness of unborn babies.
Pregnancy Crisis’ CEO said the mother of Christ was a great example of how women could triumph over their struggles in pregnancy.
“Our Lady was very humble, very poor, and she had a lot of suffering, probably throughout her life but especially in those early times, with all the threats to Christ in His early infancy,” the CEO said. “I think for mums that are coming into (the safe house), they’ve experienced those times of real poverty, difficulties and challenges that might seem insurmountable but with the help at the right time, just as Our Lady triumphed, it can be a beautiful experience for them.
“I’m sure it does share in that joy that Mary experienced with the birth of Christ.”
As the organisation prepares to welcome more vulnerable mums, with a particular focus on supporting refugees and asylum seekers as well as women fleeing from domestic abuse, the group’s CEO is encouraging pregnant women to reach out for support.
“My hope is that mothers that are vulnerable are still reaching out for the help that they need,” the CEO said. “There are people out there that care about them and care about their little ones and really want to offer that support for them.
“I just really encourage Catholics around Queensland to let them know there are many agencies who can offer support with a challenging pregnancy – accommodation, material support, volunteer visitation.”
Despite the pandemic stripping the organisation of vital funds, Pregnancy Crisis is continuing with plans to renovate the safe house, and the work is expected to begin in February.
Their end-of-year Mass will hopefully attract new financial supporters so the group can continue serving women next year.
“Our in-person fundraising has been severely restricted due to COVID restrictions this year and we are always on the lookout for new supporters, donors and volunteers,” the CEO said.
“We have some very generous members and benefactors who have continued to ensure that supporting Pregnancy Crisis remains their priority in this cash-strapped time for charities.”
To join Pregnancy Crisis at its end-of-year Mass at 10am on December 12, register at https://annerleyekibinparish.as.me/?appointmentType=14457503.