HARRISBURG, Penn., Oct. 25, 2021 /Standard Newswire/ — The following text is provided by Maria V. Gallagher, Legislative Director, Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation:
Pennsylvania’s Pregnancy & Parenting Support program is poised to administer aid to its 50,000th woman through the critical funding provided by the federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) grant.
The Keystone State was the first state in the nation to use $1 million TANF funds in 2002 to empower pregnant women through services at social service agencies like Catholic Charities, maternity homes, and pregnancy support centers.
Former US Congressman Joe Pitts sought the funding from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services for the Pennsylvania program, which has become a model for the rest of the nation. Wade Horn, then an assistant secretary at HHS, verified that the Pennsylvania program qualified for TANF.
Former Pennsylvania Governor Mark Schweiker placed TANF funds in the Commonwealth’s budget, giving rise to the successful federal-state partnership.
The Pregnancy and Parenting Support program is administered by Real Alternatives, which uses private donations to assist states throughout the country to follow Pennsylvania’s lead.
To date, 12 other states use TANF funds to provide life-affirming support to women in unexpected pregnancies.
Last year, then HHS assistant secretary Lynn Johnson congratulated Real Alternatives for its significant progress in serving pregnant women facing challenging circumstances. See her video here:
“When TANF became law in the 1990s, the intent was to allow the states, the great laboratories of our country, to use the block grant to serve our fellow citizens in need the best way they saw fit.
“It was a simple idea that those closest to the needs of society were the ones best suited to meet those needs. The power of that idea would unleash creative solutions to difficult issues.
“After reviewing your program’s performance and success, I can’t think of a better successful example of that idea than the Pennsylvania Pregnancy and Parenting Support Program,” Johnson added.
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SOURCE Real Alternatives