National Day Highlights Preventing Teen Pregnancy

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT)-- Nearly three in ten girls in America will get pregnant at least once before they turn 20 years old. Even though the numbers are down, teen pregnancy is still a major issue.

That's the focus of Wednesday, May 7, 2014, The National Day to Prevent Teen Pregnancy.

The Hope Resource Center in Knoxville helps with unplanned pregnancies, prevention and sexual health, but it's not something they do just one day a year.

"We offer confidential and non-judgmental information that's accurate. Also, we offer it all at no cost to the women we serve," said Lisa Hardin, Executive Director of the Hope Resource Center.

It's a safe place that gives young women the tools and knowledge to help them make a decision that's right for them.

"With knowledge comes accountability, we do not refer or perform abortions here. We educate them on all their options they have but of course we value life and encourage them to carry the child," said Hardin.

They've been a part of the community for 18 years and while teen pregnancy rates have decreased over the years, there's still plenty of work to do.

"It's our hope that we are able to empower young women and educate them to make good decisions and hopefully that will help decrease the rates even more," said Hardin.

But she says the best way to handle teen pregnancy is prevention.

"We are here to listen and offer any help we can. Sometimes it comes down to breaking a cycle that they've been exposed to so they don't become a product of their environment," said Hardin.

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