Life Walk Carolina 2020 — A COVID-19 hybrid

Published 7:43 am Monday, June 22, 2020

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

From Coastal Pregnancy Center


Coastal Pregnancy Center will join three other North Carolina-based pregnancy centers in Life Walk Carolina 2020 — separate and entirely virtual fundraising efforts by each of the outreaches. Rather than gathering for a group event, participants will walk their own routes, many of them simultaneously broadcasting on Facebook Live. The event page encourages participants to take part in the event “by walking around your neighborhood, the park, your church or anywhere you can exercise while adhering to social distancing guidelines.”

“It’s the first of its type in any state in the union,” said Executive Director Laura Strabley, who took the reins of Coastal Pregnancy Center in early June, replacing long-time director Susie Rollins. The event is scheduled for June 27 from 1 p.m. until 8 p.m. and, so far, counts 16 registered walkers since the event was publicized May 22.

While they walk, participants will “pray for the moms, dads and babies CPC serves as well as those we will be able to serve in the future because of community support,” Strabley said.

Supporters of the event include Washington resident Gwendolyn Gilbert, the chief behavioral health officer at Agape Health Services. Gilbert is a CPC program graduate and supporter of the center who “came to CPC for help 27 years ago. My son is now a 26-year-old college grad and homeowner,” she said.

The goal of the walk is to increase awareness of the ministry as well as raise $50,000 for operating expenses. The outreach is a faith-based 501(c)3 organization, depending on grants and donations to meet operating needs. So far, event sponsors and participants have raised $22,196 which is 44% of its goal.

According to the registration site, walkers can accept donations from family members, friends and faith groups or businesses with which they are familiar. Many will create their own fundraising pages to spread the word via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Donations are also arriving from local churches and businesses, some of whom gave to support CPC’s annual Celebration of Life Banquet, scheduled for April 23, but was canceled due to COVID-19. So far, those groups include A+W Sales/Howell’s Mercantile, Alligood Church of God, Ephesus FWB Church, First Church of Christ, Harvest Church, H&R Block, Macedonian Christian Church, River City Christian Center and SouthPoint Christian Church.

The event will include a “donation drop” at the center, as well as a meet-and-greet from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m. to celebrate the arrival of new CPC Executive Director Strabley, and bid a warm farewell to Rollins. Cash or check donations may be dropped into a donation box at that time.

“There’s joy surrounding this event because we love the people we serve,” Strabley said.

The link to register or donate can be reached via the CPC website at which will direct interested parties to Washington’s walk site. For more information, contact Strabley at or by phone at 252-946-8040. CPC is located at 1312 John Small Ave., in the Food Lion Shopping Center. Normal outreach hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, however, due to COVID-19 issues, the center is currently only available by appointment.