A local adoption agency is among those chosen to receive thousands of dollars in grant money to help promote adoption over abortion.
The Gladney Center for Adoption, which has worked locally to facilitate adoptions for more than 125 years, was chosen to receive the lion’s share of $46,000 in grants distributed by the Texas attorney general’s office.
“With this money, we can serve more women who are choosing life by choosing adoption,” said Jennifer Lanter, director of outreach and education.
These grants — given to 13 nonprofit groups statewide — are funded by proceeds from the sales of “Choose Life” license plates.
Officials announced Monday that Gladney will receive $10,000 in grant money. The second largest grant, for $7,500, will go to the Houston Pregnancy Help Center.
“Every day across Texas, children are adopted into loving families who provide for their needs and raise them to be healthy and happy adults,” Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said. “The Choose Life grants will enable recipient organizations to build on the good work they are already doing and help adoption become a reality for even more children and families in the Lone Star State.”
Grants are also being given to agencies in Brazos, Dallas, Denton, Llano, Nueces, Rockwall and Travis counties.
The money given to Gladney will be used for adoption outreach and education as well to help women planning adoption with costs such as medical care, living expenses, counseling and more. Some of the funding also will help with Gladney’s Next Steps program, which helps birth mothers focus on the “real world” after delivery.
“Gladney would like to thank the attorney general for this opportunity and everyone who supports the Choose Life license plate program,” Lanter said. “Because of their generosity and support we can continue our mission of being a place ‘where hope is born.’”
State lawmakers in 2011 approved selling the “Choose Life” license plates to generate money to help pregnant Texas women choose adoption over abortion.
Lawmakers decided that proceeds from the license plates would go into a fund that would be overseen by the Texas attorney general and distributed only for specific uses — such as prenatal care, clothes and housing for pregnant women considering adoption.
Texas motorists pay $30 for each “Choose Life” license plate. Of that money, $22 goes to the Choose Life account, $7.50 goes to the state for administrative expenses and 50 cents stays in the counties, according to the attorney general’s office.
By the end of the 2013 fiscal year, nearly 2,300 “Choose Life” license plates had been sold; there was more than $52,000 in the account, according to the attorney general’s office.
Abbott consulted with a seven-member Choose Life Advisory Committee that he appointed earlier this year on how to distribute the grant money.