The Waupaca Pregnancy Information Center (WPIC) – a Christian nonprofit organization that serves as a resource for life issues and sexuality – now has a Clintonville location.
The new site was made possible by support of Bethany Evangelical Free Church and donors.
The WPIC now has three locations – Waupaca, New London, and Clintonville – and offers three free and confidential programs: The L.O.V.E Approach: Crisis Pregnancy and Post-Abortive Support, Emberlife: Abstinence Education and Youth For Life Coalition, and A Young Mother Mentoring Program that connects single moms with financial, spiritual, and emotional support through area churches and mature Christian mentors.
“Our mission is to come alongside those who are facing unplanned pregnancies by equipping them to make healthy life choices consistent with the sanctity of human life and sexual integrity,” said WPIC Executive Director Heather Ruesch. “We have been supported by many private individuals as well as congregations for almost 19 years. Our goal is to be a relevant resource for those facing life issues in our communities.”
Ruesch also said the new location would not have been possible without the support of Bethany Evangelical Free Church, under the direction of Pastor Kurt Hettinga.
“The WPIC has several good friends at Bethany, and we worked with the congregation to come to an agreement to share some of the space in the newly renovated building next to the church. We love that the Bethany house is in such a great location; easily accessible to family and students and visible from the well-traveled N. Main Street. Hettinga said the home next to the church was purchased about six years ago, under the approval of the congregation.
“We saw a lot of possibilities for the property,” said Hettinga. “When the congregation approved the purchase, one stipulation was that we needed to avoid going into debt. So, we took it slow on the remodeling process, working on it for about three years to gut and restructure the building, remodeling it completely. We turned the attached garage into a cafè area where people can eat. We then made the home into a space that can be used for Bible studies, discipleship groups, Sunday school, counseling, one-on-one conversations, and adult Christian education. It’s been a tremendous asset to our ministry.
“After the remodel was complete, we began to use the space as much as possible,” said Hettinga. “Then the WPIC asked if they could use some space in our building. We are very happy to contribute to the WPIC, because their mission is something that we believe in so strongly – it’s helping to save lives.”
Hettinga said the congregation provides the space to WPIC at no charge.
“There is no limit on our arrangement with them. We don’t charge them rent or any other fees – that’s our contribution to their ministry. It’s a really great way for us to use the Bethany House space.”
Ruesch said Jeanne Gehrke will run the day-to-day operations of the Clintonville WPIC location, and other volunteers will help staff the location.
“We provide clothing, cribs, high chairs, diapers, wipes – all kinds of baby care products from our Care Closet. These items have all been donated by individuals and congregations in the area,” said Ruesch. “We also provide an ‘Earn While You Learn” program to those girls who may need additional practical support. This gives practical support and education for young moms and we in turn give them “Baby Bucks” that allow them to shop in our Care Closet.”
The Clintonville office is open on Mondays from noon to 8 p.m. and Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and can be reached by phone at 715-538-3575. Walk-ins are welcome.
“We are very thankful to have a location in Clintonville,” stated Ruesch. “It’s a great thing that Bethany took a step out for us. We are very excited to be serving here!”