Last winter a Birthright On Campus office opened its doors at the University of Western Ontario in London.
I had been working at the London Birthright office for two years and the volunteers there wanted to have a higher profile on the UWO campus. Attempts to inform the students of Birthright services – by means of pamphlets, advertising and flyers in the freshmen survival kits – were less than warmly welcomed by the administration.
It wasn’t until I experienced the University Hospital’s death chamber myself, that a pro-life service for pregnant and distressed students became an immediate priority for me. I’m, sure that God arranged it so that the poor young women who lived with me in residence could find no one else that day to go with her for her baby’s abortion. I explained my pro-life position to her and that I worked at Birthright. I begged her to rethink her tragic decision but no go. This woman seemed as detached, as cool and unemotional as she would have to be to walk through those doors and proceed. I, meanwhile, was an absolute mess.
As I watched them wheel my friend into the operating room another poor victim was being wheeled out – and, sure enough, twenty-five minutes later when “B’s” nightmare was over (actually it had just begun), yet another student took her place. I was so angry, so mortified that in the sterile steel walls of this miracle-working hospital, young doctors and nurses are being professionally trained to destroy life, and there I stood unable to do a thing about it.
No one has heard from her since
After a horribly painful cab ride back to residence, “B” took three pain pills and cried herself to sleep. The next day she quit school and moved out of our dorm. No one has heard from her since.
That same sad week, I discovered that 89 out of every 90 pregnant students abort their babies. There is no doubt that the university supports this “choice” all the way. Naturally, the university setting is far too sophisticated to tolerate the stupidity of “getting caught” – (which accounts for the bombardment of birth control propaganda freshmen receive from day one on campus). If you are foolish enough to get pregnant, there is really but one way to redeem yourself.
Despite the objective guidance of the well-staffed Health Services and the accompanying euphemisms implemented to tidy up this sticky, distasteful situation, UWO has still not managed to deal with the heart of the problem; that the pregnant student is a woman who is feeling all kinds of emotions. Her pride, her fun, her support, her peers’, parents’ and boyfriends’ acceptance is on the line here…yet she suddenly becomes very much alone. To quickly run her through tests and advise her of the options whilst handing her the out-patient surgery consent form (which is to be completed within two days) is not help.
Under the auspices of the London office, with the aid of numerous amazing people, Birthright On Campus, got underway. Our college’s principal gave us the use of an ideal office space, various doctors and professors helped us approach UWO Health Services in the most appropriate manner and we were blessed with over a dozen wonderful girls from my dorm that eagerly became – and remained – trained volunteers. We even found some generous fourth year students who took the time to replace our flyers all over U.C.C. (University Centre Spot) as they were being ripped down daily – (which at least assured us that they were being read).
Soon, little things started to fall into place. We actually won free advertising in The Gazette (The University newspaper). Health Services responded to us very amiably; in fact, they referred us our first client and met with us regularly to discuss her progress (this woman by the way, finished her year at school and in residence where the community of her peers stood by her throughout. They even threw her a shower to provide her with maternity clothes, etc…and just last month she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. “D” will resume her courses in January.”)