CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - According to a study by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior services, Missouri ranks 42 in the nation when it comes to maternal mortality. Now one local organization is working to change that.
“In so many cases, it breaking the cycle of poverty,” said Richard Cuba, the Chief Financial Officer of Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri.
Catholic Charities currently has a “life house” in Springfield Mo. where they house homeless mothers and children for up to two years. They plan to open a second one in Cape Girardeau soon.
“We will build a home here that will house 15 women, 18 and older, who can come in with their children under the age of 5,” said Cuba.
The living facility will have around the clock supervision, along with social service programs for these families.
“They will have healthcare; they will have the prenatal care they need to bring forth healthy babies,” said Cuba.
They plan to construct the building with charitable, donations and fundraising.
“We planned a $6 million capital campaign that will construct the building and also provide operational expenses for the first two years,” said Cuba.
Residents are normally referred to the facility and do not have to pay, but they must follow certain expectations while in the program.
“The women must be working while they are here,” said Cuba.
Cuba said he believes this program will help the change the trajectory of the many people’s lives.
“The program itself is transformational for the women and children,” said Cuba.
Cuba said they anticipate to start construction the summer and be fully operational by December 2022.