Pregnancy Care Centers of South Central Indiana has changed its name to Clarity of South Central Indiana to reflect its broadening scope in sexuality education, testing, abortion healing and outreach in six counties.
The announcement was made at the Christian-based agency’s annual meeting at The Commons Tuesday before more than 200 people in downtown Columbus.
Executive Director Tim Bond summarized the reason for the change by outlining what has been more than a three-year process while considering the nonprofit’s future mission and projects.
“One of the first things that became evident as we looked at the grand scope of those plans was this: an organization fulfilling all those (outlined) dreams was no longer just a pregnancy center. We needed a new brand identity to carry the weight of that work,” Bond said.
He added that the new name is meant to tell clients, supporters and others that the ministry that began in Shelbyville in 1983 is poised to bring clarity to what its leaders say can be very confusing issues. Those issues range from advice about preventing unwanted pregnancies to bringing comfort to those who have struggled silently for years after an abortion.
“Sometimes we just need someone to come alongside us whose eyes aren’t clouded by the fog of the current situation, someone who can bring clarity and help us see the possibilities and assist us in finding a path that leads to a desirable destination,” Bond said.
Besides helping with intervention in unplanned pregnancies, which still constitutes the bulk of Clarity’s $1.2 million annual budget, the agency also offers abstinence-oriented education programs such as I Decide For Me, children’s sexuality awareness programs as My Best For You, and Hearts Restored, helping people heal emotionally, psychologically and spiritually after an abortion.
In 2015, there were 2,639 visits to the Seventh Street Columbus office of Clarity. Some of the stories behind those numbers were emotional ones, such as one teen client seriously considering an abortion — until an ultrasound provided by Clarity showed the vigorously moving arms and legs of her 14-week-old child in her womb. Staffers mentioned that tears streamed down the young woman’s face as she saw that image appear electronically.
And the story of the new name resonated with people including Matt Bond, a Columbus resident unrelated to the organization’s leader.
“I think it’s a very good move,” Bond said. “Obviously, they are doing so much more than just pregnancy-related services, so it sounds like this is going to clarify more of what they do.”
Director of Development Teresa Russell outlined a range of statistics that painted a picture of Clarity’s impact in 2015. For instance, after the I Decide For Me programs at area high schools, 74 percent of students said they were planning to wait until marriage for sex. That figure is a 23 percentage point increase over 2014 Clarity numbers.
And there was a 33 percentage point increase in junior high students choosing abstinence until marriage after the same presentations.
“The change we’re seeing is incredible,” Russell said.
Percentage of single clients
Number of schools reached in the I Decide For Me program
Percentage of women who decide to carry their pregnancy to full term
Client visits in six counties combined
Dr. Brian Williams, who has served as volunteer medical director of Clarity of South Central Indiana since 2003, was named the agency’s volunteer of the year at Tuesday’s annual meeting.
Williams is a staff member at Ob/Gyn Associates in Columbus.
His duties with Clarity have included providing supervision of medical services; establishing and reviewing all medical policies and procedures; providing written orders for administration of medical services; reviewing and signing all ultrasound reports and a host of other tasks, according to agency leaders.
“It is difficult for me to imagine any other volunteer whose contribution has exceeded that of his own,” said Clarity’s Maria Westbrook.
Williams accepted the honor with humility, and told the crowd at the annual meeting that he loved the chance to serve.
“I do not consider this volunteer work,” he said. “It is volunteer joy.”