Clare and Cesare
Report by Sarah, Single Homeless Project, London.
*all names have been changed
“I am a Project Worker in a supported housing unit providing emotional and practical support for homeless people from various ethnic and cultural backgrounds with different support needs. A few months ago one of my clients, Clare, came to my office in floods of tears saying ‘I am pregnant and have to have an abortion’.
“She was five months pregnant. Her boyfriend was as scared as she was and felt that he could not cope with the situation himself, never mind supporting Clare. Clare had problems with her state and housing benefits. ‘It shouldn’t have happened’ she told me. ‘This baby wasn’t planned, it shouldn’t be born into this situation. It won’t have a chance in life’. After talking with her, I suggested that there could be other options if she was willing to explore them.
“She nodded in response but didn’t seem very convinced. I contacted various organisations asking if they could possibly help or whether they knew someone that I could approach. Finally, thank God, somebody recommended that I should contact The Right to Life Charitable Trust. I called and explained the situation to the people at the Trust.
“Within a few minutes of explaining my work, Clare’s background and situation, the Trust confirmed that it could provide support. Clare, my colleagues and I were utterly overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity shown and some of us burst into tears there and then! The Trust bent over backwards to help: they sent weekly M & S vouchers to my organisation to give to Clare. They also provided a pram and the most beautiful layette complete with bath, a Moses basket, baby grows, blankets and other items.
“Clare’s boyfriend began visiting more. In fact, they both felt more optimistic about their relationship and the baby. They couldn’t believe that an organisation such as The Right to Life Charitable Trust even existed. They actually began to talk about the future and Clare’s boyfriend got hold of a college prospectus, telling me ‘I think I should do something. I don’t know what… but something that will help me get a good job so that I can look after Clare and the little one’. Hope was revived in them……as we all watched Clare’s tummy growing bigger and bigger!
“One Monday morning I received a message from Clare to say that she had given birth to ‘the most gorgeous baby boy anyone had ever seen’. The situation with her benefits has been resolved. Her boyfriend is training as a plumber, and Clare is enjoying every moment of being a full-time mother. Both she and her boyfriend are ecstatic about Cesare, their baby. Both of them have whispered to me: ‘we cannot believe that we even considered having him aborted’. I told them: ‘Challenges can be stepping stones or stumbling blocks. It depends on how you view them. These hurdles are a part of life for everybody’.
“Clare and her partner have told me that one day they hope to be in a position to make donations to the Trust to help to provide support to others in similar situations.”