Arkansas Advocate : Remainder of $1 million pregnancy resource center grant will be distributed this month | Regional News

According to the State Department of Finance, grants to Arkansas Pregnancy Resource Centers will support a total of 23 facilities after distributing the remainder of the $1 million grant fund created in 2022.

Taxpayer-funded grants are available for “critical pregnancy centers,” childbirth facilities, adoption agencies, and “material assistance and assistance to help individuals facing unintended pregnancies deliver their fetuses.” Support social service agencies that provide other assistance. Law No. 187 of 2022.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed the grant into law months before the U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturning the Roe v. Wade ruling in June 2022. Since then, Republican state leaders have held the Pregnancy Resource Center to the fore after a ruling made abortion almost completely illegal in Arkansas.

Fourteen centers will receive a total of $454,191 from the grant fund in September 2022, with nine more receiving $488,108.43 later this month, said finance and administration spokesman Scott Hardin. The rest of the money will be “divided equitably among all successful winners,” rather than being returned to the state’s General Revenue Fund as originally planned, he said.

Nearly all applicants are critical pregnancy centers, often religiously associated, discouraging clients from terminating pregnancies.The exceptions are Little Rock adoption agencies, Springdale and A West Memphis non-profit organization focused on supporting Berryville birthing facilities and needy communities.

In November, 17 applicants applied for the second round of funding, totaling $494,973.91. None of his nine facilities expected to receive funding were in the first round. Eight of them didn’t apply at first. A ninth facility, Acts of Hope in Bryceville, applied for the first round in August but was denied funding due to grant rules.

The nine centers that receive funding are:

Act of Hope, Bryceville: $26,230.95

Hope Place, Fordyce: $32,000

Hope Place, Monticello: $31,224.50

Informed Choice Women’s Center of the Ozarks, Harrison: $29,343.60

Informed Choice Women’s Center of the Ozarks, Mountain Home: $31,257.18

Alpha Centers, Batesville: $26,800

Pregnancy Help Clinic, Clarksville: $30,420

Pathways Resource Center, Texarkana: $31,996.18

Compassion Home, Springdale: $32,000 of $38,865.48 Claims

All applicants who were denied one-half of their grants received their funding in September. Each iterative applicant, including Acts of Hope, asked for less money in her second round than in the first.

The eight centers rejected in the second round received the following amounts in the first round.

Hope of the Delta Center, Pine Bluff/Stuttgart/West Memphis: $32,225.00

Pregnancy Resource Center in Arkadelphia, Southwest Arkansas: $39,954.71

Caring Hearts Pregnancy Center, Little Rock/North Little Rock: $39,960

Open Arms Pregnancy Center, Huntsville: $39,998

Hope Place, Newport: $40,000.00

St. Joseph’s Helpers of Pulaski County d/b/a Arkansas Pregnancy Resource Center, Little Rock: $40,000

Changepoint Pregancy Care & Parenting Center, Hot Springs: $11,600 of $40,000 requested

New Beginnings Pregnancy Center, Benton: $34,600 out of $40,000 requested

The six facilities that received funding the first time and did not apply the second time are:

Cradle Maternity Support Center, Berryville: $5,880

First Choice Pregnancy Resource Center, Hope: $10,501

Hannah Pregnancy Resource Center, Camden/Eldorado/Magnolia: $39,510

Baptist Arkansas Children and Family Ministry, Little Rock: $39,962.50

Heart to Heart Pregnancy and Family Care Center, Fort Smith: $40,000

PLUM Foundation, West Memphis: $40,000

Digital advertising was a common priority among first round applicants. Several centers that received the funding said they would use it to target ads to people in Arkansas whose online activity suggested they were at risk of an unplanned pregnancy. HopePlace Newport, Caring Hearts of Little Rock and North Little Rock, and Arkansas Pregancy Resource Center of Little Rock all received funding in Round 1 of the Google Ads deal.

Some second round applicants focused on advertisements such as Hope of the Delta. The center received funding in September to expand her prenatal education program from Pine Bluff to her two other locations.

The Pregnancy Resource Center also hopes to use some of the grant money to pay for physical advertising, rent and utilities, baby products, childcare classes, and more staff.

If the grant program continues, the state legislature will have to pass another bill, and incoming Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders must sign it into law.

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