A local nonprofit that offers free services for women and families is hosting its largest fundraiser ever this Saturday night.
The Cobb Pregnancy Resource Center in Kennesaw is having a barbecue fundraiser, “Family Fun Night,” at Elizabeth Baptist Church in Marietta starting at 6 p.m. It will feature live music, a black light puppet show for children and dinner.
The center, off Cherokee Street, was opened nearly four years ago by Donette Lawson, and depends solely on donations and volunteers from the community.
“I actually helped to start one in Texas when we lived there and worked there for 10 years,” Lawson said. “When my husband was transferred here, I noticed that there wasn’t one in the Kennesaw area, so I started this one.”
It offers a number of free services to clients, including pregnancy testing; parenting information and classes; infant care classes; life skills programs that help mothers learn to budget, write resumes or interview for jobs; free diapers once a month; and other maternity or baby needs.
“We kind of see where the girl is coming from and see what her needs are,” Lawson said. “We don’t want to just put a Band-Aid on her situation. We want to get her out of that situation and get her on the right track.”
They also offer support groups for people who were raped or physically abused, are single mothers, or anyone who had a miscarriage or is struggling with any post-abortion problems.
Their clientele includes people from all socioeconomic backgrounds and age ranges and are typically referred through schools, churches or other agencies. They also accept walk-ins and appointments.
“Our youngest client has been 13 and our oldest has been 53,” Lawson said. “It’s open to anyone who needs help or needs the classes.”
Kathy Sears, who has served on the seven-member board of directors for almost three years, said she joined the efforts because she has a heart for places like the center that reach out to women in hard places.
“The center serves in that capacity in a wonderful way,” she said. “It’s non-judgmental, helps to guide them and helps with short and long term needs.”
She encourages residents to come check out the center during business hours, see what they offer to the community and get a tour.
“We are always looking for people to come in and learn more about what’s done here,” she said.
In its continued efforts to raise money through the community, a second fundraiser is scheduled for Friday, May 3, at the Creekside Golf Course in Hiram.
The golf tournament will be free to pastors and their teams of four or $110 per individual and $400 per team.
Lawson said lunch will be provided and prizes for a hole-in-one, whoever hits the ball closest to the pin or the longest drive will be awarded.
Participants for the barbecue and golf tournament are asked to RSVP by calling Lawson at 770-712-9773 or 770-485-2689.
Anyone also wanting to make a donation or volunteer at the center can call Lawson or visit the center’s website at cobbpregnancyresourcecenter.org.