Merci's Refuge is a program of Living Alternatives Pregnancy Resource Center. Since 1985 Living Alternatives has served women experiencing crisis pregnancies and those seeking post-abortion support through material assistance, mentoring, pregnancy testing, and free ultrasounds. It is out of this mission and history that the vision for Merci's Refuge was born.
The need for residential care was evident early on in the organization's history. Christian families became "Shepherding Homes" to house and support women during their pregnancies. However, without formal structure and programming, this method was not sufficient to help women move beyond the various issues keeping them from reaching their goals and potential.
Some years later, Greta Henry visited Mercy Ministries in Tennessee and experienced a working model for truly supporting women through their pregnancies and other challenging situations. In 2008, a team of volunteers from the Champaign community began meeting and praying about how a life-transforming residential program could be started in Champaign for women in Illinois and across the United States.
In September of 2016 Merci's Refuge officially opened to residents!