The Benedictine Monks at Belmont Abbey have donated four acres on the college campus for a building that will house single, college women who become pregnant. A Catholic nonprofit called Room at the Inn, based in Charlotte, is behind the project. Executive Director Jeannie Wray says there will be space for 15 women and their newborns who will be able to stay for up to two-years rent free.
"It's an opportunity for them not to have to give up their hopes and dreams," says Wray. "But it's also an opportunity for them not to be forced to do something that they may regret later."
Room at the Inn offers counseling and services to help pregnant college-age women avoid abortion. Those who live at the new home won't have to be Catholic or attend Belmont Abbey College, but they will have to attend a church and be enrolled in college courses somewhere.
Wray says Room at the Inn has raised $2.2 million of the $3 million the new building will cost to construct. School officials and monks at Belmont Abbey helped break ground on the facility today.