District 15 has received the following letter from Birthright of Decorah:

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5 September 2017

Dear friends of Birthright,

It is with great sadness that we’re writing this letter.  Due to a lack of volunteers as well as clientele we’re finding it necessary to close our Birthright office in Decorah.  We’ve been open for over twenty years and have assisted a lot of young girls in that time.

We can’t thank you enough for all the support you’ve given us over those years.  The Knights of Columbus have been loyal supporters as well as some church groups, businesses and many, many individuals who have donated to our cause.  Your donations over these years have made it possible for us to keep our doors open.  Due to your generosity we’ve never had a problem wondering how we could pay our rent for the next month or to stay on top of our bills. 

Any funds left after we pay our final bills will be turned over to Birthright International, so it’s still there to help Birthright clients.  If anyone is interested in opening a Birthright office in the surrounding area, this money will be held in a trust for two years and would be there to help you get your office started.

This is one of our favorite Birthright stories here in Decorah.  One evening a young couple came in with their one year old son.  They asked for one of our volunteers, but she wasn’t working that evening.  They proceeded to say that their little boy wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for that volunteer.  Some time back, they had come in for a pregnancy test and our volunteer visited with them about how they could get help to have their baby and get on with their life.  They had been messed up with alcohol and drugs.  After lengthy conversation they left the office and our volunteer didn’t know what decisions they would make for themselves and their baby.  But after leaving our office, they decided to straighten out their lives and not mess up their baby’s life too.  So they got an education, jobs and had their baby.  So this story had a happy ending.  We didn’t always know what decisions the young people made after leaving our office. 

We have had lots of other good stories over the years.  And with the help of our good volunteers in our twenty years we have been able to offer love, hope and support to lots of young girls in the area.  But times do change and as our journey ends at Birthright of Decorah, we again want to thank all of you from the bottom of our hearts for all you’ve done for us over the years.

Your love and support will never be forgotten.

Sincerely, Birthright of Decorah Board Members,

Gerry Sorenson, Director
Mary Ann Gloe, Secretary
Julie Henry, Treasurer
Larry Hauber
Rhonda Storlie
Lauri Mertzenich

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Comment by Decorah Knights on September 28, 2017 at 12:28pm

The Decorah Knights of Columbus are saddened to learn of the demise of Birthright of Decorah. We are thankful for the years of support Birthright has provided to the Decorah community, and we pray for forward movement at this time in the area of crisis pregnancy support. God bless everyone who has been associated with Birthright.

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