A huge crowd from the Carthage community turned out to celebrate the opening of LifeChoices on Fair Lawn Drive Tuesday.
Joining the Carthage Chamber of Commerce in welcoming the new location were: members of the Carthage R-9 School District, local citizens, business representatives, local organization leaders and Missouri State Senator Ron Richard.
LifeChoices is an organization that provides medical services and education to young parents. The professional staff provides confidential services such as: STI testing and treatment, pregnancy testing, limited OB ultrasounds and parenting classes.
The location in Carthage has only been open two weeks, and already served nine individuals. The new facility, which shares a building with Oak Street Herb Shop, has a medical lab, two exam rooms, a council room and an educational room. Jordynn Griffith, coordinator of events and resources for LifeChoices, said it was a small but well-established location.
“Our whole goal was to make the place warm and comfortable,” she said, giving a tour of the building on Tuesday. “It’s not that cold and sterile feeling. While keeping a professional feel, it’s still that comfortable feel of a friend’s home. When young parents feel comfortable, they’re more able to share what’s going on in their lives, make healthy decisions and we are able to provide the best service for them.”
LifeChoices has provided the Joplin area with free and confidential services to those in need since 1989. Approximately 7,000 medical services were administered to more than 2,000 individuals last year alone. In the education focus, the organization's Connection Institute department gave more than 9,000 students across the region prevention education dealing with relationships and healthy decision-making.
LifeChoices in Carthage, located at 2337 Fair Lawn Dr., is open three days a week with a four-person medical staff and many volunteers. Appointments may be made at 417-388-3434. There is a 24-hour text service at 209-591-8378.