Every year, someone from Covenant Care Services calls to ask me to help publicize their Ladies Night Out fundraiser.
Every year I do so, but always with a few tears in my eyes as I type.
I have friends who have adopted children, so I know through them what it means to a mother to receive the gift of a child through adoption.
I also have a friend who years ago decided to place her child through adoption. At the time, she was unmarried, uneducated and unable to care for a child. Instead of ending the child's life through an abortion or surrendering herself and the child to a life of struggle, my friend decided to place the child with a family through adoption.
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Adoption agencies don't like the term "gave up" for adoption -- it has too many negative connotations. But I personally can't think of adoption without the word "gave." My friend gave that day -- she gave birth and then gave a family a start. She gave a child a life she couldn't provide, and she gave herself the opportunity to start a different life.
She was my hero that day all those years ago. She is still my hero.
In Middle Georgia, we are fortunate to have the ministry of Covenant Care Services dedicated to helping place children as well as counseling women through an unplanned pregnancy.
Every year, Covenant Care hosts a "Ladies Night Out" -- an annual fundraiser for Covenant Care Services, which is a nonprofit, nondenominational, Christian ministry that provides adoption services. Along with adoption, Covenant Care offers pre-natal counseling as well as follow-up counseling, throughout the state of Georgia.
Services are free to young women in crisis regardless of whether =they choose to place their child for adoption.
Proceeds from the Ladies Night Out benefit the pro-life, adoption ministries of Covenant Care Services in Middle Georgia and throughout the state. While the state offices are located in Macon, Covenant Care serves the entire state of Georgia with caseworkers located in Macon, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta and Savannah. Organized in 1989, Covenant Care has assisted more than 5,000 women coping with an unplanned pregnancy and has placed 550 children in two-parent homes.
The Ladies Night Out always features a guest speaker, and the one appearing this year really needs no introduction. LaDonna Gatlin, a member of the legendary Gatlin family, will be speaking and singing. Gatlin grew up on the stage performing with her famous brothers.
She performs in venues from prisons to corporate conventions and is the author of "The Song in You: Finding Your Voice, Redefining Your Life" as well as a contributing writer to the best-selling book series, "Chicken Soup for the Soul."
Covenant Care Services will host its 11th annual Ladies' Night Out at 7 p.m. March 17 at Shirley Hills Baptist Church in Warner Robins. The event will be followed by a dessert reception with door prizes.
Tickets for the event are $20 each and must be purchased in advance at one of the following locations: LifeWay Christian Store in Warner Robins, Gottwals Books in Warner Robins, Macon, Byron and Perry, My Father's Place Pizza in Warner Robins or Covenant Care Services' office in Macon.
Tickets must be purchased in advance and will not be sold at the door.
Alline Kent can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 396-2467.