Many people have heard the motto, “Just because it isn’t easy doesn’t mean it isn’t worth it“.  Fundraising for non-profit organizations during a health and economic crisis easily certainly falls into this category.  Perhaps no one knows this better than St. Paul’s Abria Pregnancy Resources after hosting its annual Life Is Wonderful 5k fundraiser–at a distance–Mother’s Day weekend.  Even with the resourceful ways the organization sought to meet its funding needs under unprecedented social

Mary Dudley ’20 participates in the Abria virtual Fun Run from her house.

distancing restrictions, they were still left far short of their annual goal, according to the Abria website as of Saturday, May 9.  The PA community boasted several participants in this year’s event, though numbers have been stronger in previous years.

On its website, Abria states, “Our role is to walk with [women in crisis pregnancy] in friendship, providing the support and resources they need to make a life-affirming decision”. Because Abria is a non-profit organization, it functions day to day thanks to the generous help of sponsors. The 5k Fun Run held each spring, along with the Gala, is one of the center’s primary fundraisers. Due to the current circumstances, an in-person event was not an option. Everyone at Abria had to work together to create a plan to still promote awareness while safely doing so. 

So, on Saturday, May 9th, Abria held a “virtual” 5k. They still reached out for online donations, and asked supporters to participate by running or walking a 5k near their homes. Providence Academy has always been a strong supporter of Abria, and they didn’t let social distancing get in the way this year.

Participant Mary Dudley ‘20 commented, “The fact that Abria is still organizing fundraisers at this time highlights how important this care is for women and children who are in difficult situations”.

Nina von Dohlen ’22, Ella von Dohlen ’20, and Celia Raney ’20 participate in the Abria virtual Fun Run.

Nina von Dohlen ’22 also took part in the event.  Von Dohlen reflected, “It was cool to see how people could still be hopeful and prayerful during these difficult times. It shows the importance of seeing how existing needs do not diminish when new needs arise”.

The timing–a day before Mother’s day–is no coincidence. Dudley added, “The date of the run every year has always been an important statement about the event. Many young women do not feel that they have the strength and resources to be a mother, and this run allows women to celebrate motherhood with their children in a safe and happy environment”.

Another participant commented, “Mother’s day is a timely occasion for this fundraiser. The run/walk underscores the dignity of human life at every stage and honors Mothers who endure so much to bring life safely into the world”.

Dudley reflected, “It was also nice to know that I could still positively affect the world despite all the sadness and loss that surrounds us right now”. Though COVID-19 presents new challenges, there is still a need for support for Abria, both in awareness and in funding. If you want to donate to Abria, either funds or items for expectant mothers, visit https://supporters.abria.org/donate-2/ for more information.

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