A special interview with Bernadette Smyth for International Women's Day

  • A special interview with Bernadette Smyth for International Women's Day
  • A special interview with Bernadette Smyth for International Women's Day
On International Women's Day, Nicola Black interviewed Bernadette Smyth from Stanton Healthcare Belfast...
"Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today! Let me express my sincere congratulations on the remarkable work being accomplished at Stanton Healthcare Belfast. Stanton's commitment to supporting women facing unexpected pregnancies through practical, financial, and emotional assistance is truly commendable".
Please elaborate on your journey with Stanton and how it has unfolded for you.
"Certainly! The journey with Stanton has been both a challenge and a source of immense fulfilment. Securing the necessary funding to sustain such a vital project has posed its difficulties, but the tangible successes we've achieved speak volumes. Witnessing the impact firsthand, especially through the many babies we've helped save, brings a profound sense of joy and fulfilment to our team."
Could you delve deeper into your mission at Stanton?
"Absolutely. Our mission at Stanton Healthcare is rooted in empowering and equipping women facing unexpected pregnancies with the necessary information and support to choose life for their babies. Our comprehensive services include free pregnancy tests, life-affirming care, emotional and practical support, free ultrasound scans, mother and baby care packages, home visits, emergency housing, and much more. We strive to be a beacon of hope and support to abortion-vulnerable women."
Can you share when you first realised that this cause was something you wanted to dedicate your life to?
"My dedication to this cause traces back to my teenage years, witnessing a close friend undergo an abortion due to feeling she had no other option. This experience left a profound impact, highlighting the stark reality of the lack of support available to women in such situations. As I grew older, I became increasingly passionate about filling this void and providing a safe haven where women could find hope, love and support. Stanton emerged from this desire to offer tangible alternatives to abortion and to advocate for the inherent right of every woman to embrace motherhood."
What are some of the typical challenges you encounter in your role?
"Securing financial support for Stanton remains a significant challenge, as does addressing the misconception that feminist ideals are incompatible with the pro-life movement. Modern feminists tell women they must choose between having a family and an education or a successful career, perpetuating the idea that abortion is the only solution to an unexpected pregnancy. However, we believe that true feminism encompasses the rights of all women, including the right to choose life for their babies.
Real feminists will fight for the rights of all women from conception to natural death."
Tell me about your vision for the future.
"Our vision is to make the womb a safer place, by making Stanton Healthcare ‘the first choice' for women with unplanned pregnancies. And our plan for the future is to replace abortion centres in Ireland with life-affirming centres that will love and care for both."
Thank you so much for sharing with me about the amazing work of Stanton Healthcare Belfast.

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