Rotarians learn about Sav-a-Life

Published 11:00 pm Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Jane Ward, executive director of Sav-A-Life in Troy, delivered some surprising, if not shocking, news to the Brundidge Rotarians Wednesday.

Ward was the program guest of Homer Homann at the club’s regular meeting.

She informed the Rotarians about the work that is being done at Sav-A-Life and also brought greater awareness to the need for and value of the center and the programs that it offers.

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Sav-A-Life in Troy serves Troy and Pike County and also, Barbour, Bullock, South Montgomery and Coffee counties.

Sav-A-Life Troy had a busy year in 2013. The numbers proved it.

“In 2013, we conducted 548 pregnancy tests,” Ward said. “Only 17 percent of those tested were married. The youngest tested was 13 years old. Although that is young, the year before the youngest was 10 years old.”

Ward said the oldest person tested was 49, “and she was not happy.”

Sixty-eight percent of the positive pregnancy tests were confirmed births, Ward said.

“But, we don’t have December’s numbers and some of the women changed addresses and we weren’t able to contact them,” she said. “Some could have had miscarriages and others could have opted for adoption.”

While pregnancy among unwed women is reason for concern, sexually transmitted diseases continue to be a huge problem in Pike County.

“The STD rate among young people in Pike County is 70-77 percent,” Ward said. “What that means is that three out of four people you meet under the age of 25 have a sexually transmitted disease. The national STD rate is 50 percent.”

Ward said that Sav-A-Life presents abstinence programs at local high schools including Charles Henderson, Pike County, Pike Liberal Arts, New Life Christian and the Boys and Girls Club and the Troy Group Home.

Sav-A-Life is a non-profit organization and receives no funds from any government entity.

“We depend on donations and fundraising,” Ward said. “Our big fundraiser, the Low Country Boil, will be Feb. 28 at Park Memorial United Methodist Church. We encourage everyone to attend.”