Walk for life raises awareness, funds

Elna Seabrooks , Special to The County
14 years ago

HOULTON, Maine — Close to $5,000 went to support the Pregnancy Care Center’s non-profit work as a result of their annual Walk for Life last Thursday. At least 50 registered walkers — men, women and children — were joined by others who did not pre-register for the two-mile journey through Houlton.
Before the walk, music filled the assembly area in the TD Banknorth parking where adults mingled,  candy and treats were passed out, children played games including beanbag toss and still more children waited in line for a volunteer who was doing face painting.
Inside the Career Enhancement Center volunteers registered walkers, most of whom were sponsored. According to Christie Corey, executive director of the organization, seven churches from the area and one from Woodstock sponsored individual walkers and families who were in the running, so to speak, for prizes. Corey said the event relies on monthly donors, and two fund-raisers — the walk and a baby bottle drive whereby supporters return baby bottles filled with money. The annual walk in Houlton and Presque Isle are very significant, said Corey. Prizes for the walks are supplied by donors.

Ron Murray and his wife, Mary, drove in from Hodgdon. As Murray handed in his registration, he said the East Hodgdon Bible Church had sponsored him and his wife and others at $25 each. His wife said she supported the event “because life is important and it’s a good cause.”
Corey explained that the Pregnancy Care Center is a “life-affirming organization that does not convince or persuade women about what to do. We say ‘this is the information. Stop. Think about this decision and how you will feel about it down the road.’”
She explained that pregnancy testing is free and if a woman decides to proceed with her pregnancy, she can receive assistance for maternity and baby clothes, baby furniture, diapers, layettes and other baby needs.
Walker and volunteer Kathy Ledger said she has had several sponsors over the past four years when she participated in the event. “It brings awareness to the community. It’s important because when you put others needs before your own, it goes a long way.”

Representing the St. Mary’s Youth Ministry, Theresa Griffin also echoed the importance of the organization and the event. “Every life is sacred. It’s important to give witness to women who feel they have no choice,” said Griffin who walked with her husband, daughters and sons.
Cpl. Dana Duff drove a Houlton Police Department vehicle to escort the walkers who returned to their starting point for ice cream sundaes.