Michele Altman, the former membership director at the YMCA, is now President of Summit Life Outreach Center, an outreach center for women in crisis pregnancies.
"We provide free, life-affirming services to women (and men) who find themselves in a crisis pregnancy," she told the Reporter. "We have a rich history and have helped to make positive changes in families in our communities."
Established in 2005, Summit Life Outreach Center offers an array for services - all of them are free.
From free pregnancy tests to free counseling providing "accurate, up-to-date information" on three choices every woman makes when she is pregnant: Parenting; adoption, or abortion.
"No one needs anyone to tell them what to do," Summit's website explains. "We are not here to do that. We are committed to empowering women to make decisions without manipulating them. We all need support as we take the time to look at our options and walk through our fears. We are here to provide that support."
The reference to manipulating is a way of saying that some outreach agencies simply refer all crisis pregnancies to end the "crisis" with abortion - for which they may make a referral fee or actually perform abortions.
Summit Life does not refer for or perform abortions.
Counselors talk about "abortion risks", "the possible consequences, and, if a woman decides to consider parenting, Summit Life will help secure financial aid, arrange for medical needs, and pre-natal and child birth classes, teen parenting classes, make referrals to mom's groups, give free maternity clothing, infant clothing, "gently used" strollers, and highchairs, and mom's baskets with items a mother will need for her baby.
When parenting is not possible, Summit Life offers "a loving option worth your consideration," -- adoption and an adoption referral.
"Abortion is not just a simple medical procedure," Altman says. "For many, it is a life changing event with physical, emotional, and spiritual consequences. You have time to gather all the facts. Real empowerment comes when you find the resources and inner strength necessary to make your best choice. It's your choice, choose wisely."
Located at 1622 Pine Avenue, on the corner of Pine Avenue and 17th St., call to set up an appointment: (716) 298-8600; or visit http://summitlifecenter.com.
Summit Life relies solely on donations voluntarily offered and not from government subsidies.