By Marek Michalčík
March 25th was the 12th annual Day of the Unborn Child in Slovakia. The goals of the pro-life organizations associated with Fórum života (Forum for Life) were to defend the right to life for each child from conception, to make arguments in the public square in favor of protecting children, as well as to create a stronger environment of respect for life.
The motto of this year’s campaign was “Life is the right choice!” Since the beginning of March, 150 billboards with this theme were posted throughout Slovakia, each sponsored by an individual donor. The regional television stations in Slovakia also broadcasted a commercial that Forum for Life produced. Many weekly and monthly publications, regional magazines and web sites covered our campaign as well.
The Day of the Unborn Child saw many volunteers handing out white ribbons, as well as 60,000 brochures and 2,800 posters in the squares of the larger cities and many smaller towns. Two marches for the protection of the unborn child were organized in Bratislava and in Kosice. Around 500 young people marched for the first time in Bratislava, and in Kosice more than 1,500 people participated in the march.
During the week leading up to these events, various activities took place pointing to the need to protect human life from conception. The 14th annual international “Choose Life” conference was sponsored by Members of European Parliament (MEPs) Anna Záborská and Peter Dobeš, and the Mayor of Rajecké Teplice, Peter Dobeš. The talks given during the conference focused on “Human Dignity, Old Age and Dying,” including presentations on “Human Dignity at the End of Life,“ “Intergeneration Solidarity,” and “Recognizing the Dignity of Seniors.” Italian politician Luca Volonte participated in the conference, speaking of the political fight against euthanasia. Also presented at the conference were the eighth annual Anton Neuwirth Prizes for the Protection of Life, which were given to Alica Valkyova, the founder of the first hospice in Slovakia, and to Marie Svatošova, the founder of the hospice movement in the Czech Republic.
Projects of Forum for Life were also presented during the Day of the Unborn Child campaign. Specifically, the project Alexis, a consulting center for women and girls (www.alexisporadna.sk), and project Save the Lives (www.zachranmezivoty.sk), which offers comprehensive social and material assistance to pregnant women and mothers with children who do not have the support or resources to deal with a crisis pregnancy.
Forum for Life and other pro-life supporters also wrote a letter to members of the Slovak Parliament in which they were invited to join the Day of the Unborn Child campaign. The newly elected members of the Parliament were asked to consider ways in which to improve the protection of the right to life in our country.
More information on the events surrounding Slovakia’s Day of the Unborn Child can be found on www.25marec.sk and on Facebook as well. The campaign brought a message of truth and of hope for greater respect for all human life, and given the expansion of this year’s campaign, our message of protecting life promises to continue growing in Slovakia.
Related video – Forum for Life TV Commercial: