Maternity home in Dubuque to welcome pregnant teens - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Maternity home in Dubuque to welcome pregnant teens

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DUBUQUE (KWWL) - Mary's Inn was started in Dubuque to fill a gap of services.

"There's no place for girls who come home from high school and say, 'Mom, Dad, I'm pregnant,' and the parents say, 'You're outta here,'" said Colleen Pasnik, Director of Mary's Inn Maternity Home. "'Have an abortion or you're outta here.' And the girl says, 'Well, I don't want to have an abortion.' So she couch surfs and stays with friends a couple weeks at a time. So there really is a gap in the services."

Through generous donations, they've been able to buy a house and find staff to provide a home for up to four women who are pregnant and have nowhere else to go. 

But it won't just be a free ride for these girls. They will be required to do chores, go to church and continue their education. 

"So we really want to equip them with some very practical skills so when they leave the home, they're making better decisions," said Pasnik. 

The home has been welcomed to the neighborhood with fairly open arms. They were required to notify all neighbors within 200 feet.

"Out of the 21 neighbors, there are a handful that are upset, but the rest have been very supportive," Pasnik said.

The house is set to open in early June. They'll hold an open house in advance of that in late May.

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