(Air1 Closer Look) -- A girl feels nauseous. Anxious. She searches the internet: how do I know if I’m pregnant?
Dawn-Marie Perez, executive director of StandUpGirl.com says their site stands ready to help. “Our mission is to have these girls be able to find life-affirming information through us -- and then we connect them with pregnancy centers in their neighborhood.” Quick response is essential. “If you go google the word ‘abortion’ right now there are millions of websites that are gonna come up. Our goal is to have StandUpGirl show up on that first page of their google search.”
How? “We spend close to $10K a month through advertising on internet search engines so that if a woman is out there looking for information -- even if she’s searching for information about abortion -- she finds StandUpGirl.” What does she find when she clicks the link? “We have thousands and thousands of stories from girls who have been in that situation [unplanned pregnancy] – we have built this community of women to help and guide each other with light, hope and courage, that these young women would choose life for their baby.”
In partnership with Heartbeat International, CareNet and Birthright, StandUpGirl.com uses a geolocator to point web-visitors to one of 2,200 pro-life pregnancy centers closest to their home. Girls from as far away as Africa and Asia also get connected to local help. Visitors find written testimonials from other women with unplanned pregnancies, plus videos and podcasts where "a girl can listen and know they‘re not alone -- it gives them that hope to say ‘you know what, ‘I can do this.”
There are several ways a girl visiting the site will be greeted by a real person, ranging from a 24/7 chatroom, text counseling or personal email response. Since 2001, StandUpGirl.com has welcomed more than 54-million people to the site. Between 8,000-10,000 girls and women visit every single day. The social media presence continues to evolve and clocked 17-million Facebook interactions in 2021 alone. “In the moment of crisis you know you just can’t think straight, and these young girls that come to us are like, ‘my life is changed and I’m not gonna graduate from highschool… my parents are gonna kick me out, my boyfriend’s gonna leave me,’ and we just wanna come alongside them and put our arm around them through the Internet and say ‘we’re here for you and we’re gonna help you.”
Perez affirms StandUpGirl.com is a Christ-centered organization despite the fact it may not be obvious when you visit the site. “We are really pro-love: we wanna be able to love on anybody that is in a situation where they are scared, they’re not sure what to do,” and -- “ultimately our goal is to say to them, ‘hey, you have a heavenly Father that loves you – you are not alone.”