Pettaway Pursuit Foundation at a glance...


Pettaway Pursuit Foundation (PPF) was founded by Theresa Pettaway in 1999. Theresa experienced the anxiety of early labor with all three of her children and the pain of watching her newborns in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). She spent years overcoming these traumatic experiences while caring for her fragile infants together with the loving and constant support of her husband. Referencing her own struggles, Theresa came to the realization that women of all ages have faced the same problem and are in need of assistance. Thus, PPF was born. 


Since 1999, Theresa has made herself available as an on-call mentor for distressed and postpartum mothers at the NICU of Hahnemann Hospital and Saint Christopher's Hospital for Children, both located in Philadelphia. Working with both social workers and nursing staff, she has successfully rendered support by providing a listening ear, sharing experiences and promoting self confidence in new mothers who are desperately in need of emotional support. As time went on, other mothers began volunteering their time to assist Theresa with her mission. 

In July 2001, PPF was incorporated as a non-profit educational and community outreach organization operating under section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, serving low income families in Philadelphia and its surrounding counties. 

Considering its steady growth as an organization, PPF began providing free education workshops in 2002 in various Philadelphia locations. These workshops were designed to promote community awareness, and to educate and inform affected families about high-risk pregnancies and how to care for premature infants. In addition, PPF provides expectant mothers with information on the importance of prenatal care for the prevention of premature births. Supporting this compelling matter, PPF expects to lower the morality rate of premature infants and costs associated with their healthcare. 

Further expanding its mission, in 2005, PPF formed an alliance with the Helen O. Dickens Center for Women's Health at the hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP), providing support services for high-risk, bed rest pregnancy patients and their families. PPF also works in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania's Intensive Care Nursery (ICN) and Transitional Care Nursery (TCN) to mentor parents of premature infants who require round-the-clock care. The ICN and TCN at full capacity handle 36 beds of premature and sick babies at one of the largest Hospitals in the U.S., broadening PPF’s outreach.

In 2006, PPF researched its clientele base and realized that the primary healthcare provider for these high-risk pregnant mothers was Keystone Mercy Health Plan, averaging 90% at each workshop.  PPF then approached Keystone Mercy Health Plan (KMHP) with this information in an effort to form a collaboration for funding opportunities.  KMHP required the acquisition of certifications through DONA International (Doulas of North America), the oldest, largest most reputable in the world, with concentrations on quality and professionalism. As Doula providers, PPF adhered to this stipulation prior to establishing a program in which KMHP’s members could partake.

Once fully certified, PPF signed an agreement with a KMHP WeeCare Case Manager Supervisor to provide services for their high risk expectant mothers on bed rest.  The program was established to educate and encourage members on bed rest to improve birth outcomes by preventing preterm births. During this time PPF required all of its mentors to be Doula trained and certified as one of the three types of doulas: antepartum, birth, and postpartum.

After nearly two decades of servicing both prenatal and postpartum needs of mothers from various backgrounds, Pettaway Pursuit Foundation has rewritten this narrative by becoming the first company to collaborate with insurance companies to offer the doula experience as a fee for service. Through Medicaid, PPF expands its outreach to mothers across numerous demographics.

Included in these demographics, we service communities across three states: Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. Pennsylvania, having been founded there 18 years ago, boasts PPF’s largest member clientele with an agreement to serve 5 counties within the state. Massachusetts, although not far behind Pennsylvania, has developed a niche-like market which has seen a steady growth rate in members within the past few years. Having started in this sector in 2015, PPF takes pride in steadily progressing towards the statewide doula coverage for which we’ve been approved. Rhode Island is our most recent expansion in which PPF will be providing doula services this year. PPF has already begun its process of selecting doulas who represent the methodology to serve in this sector of the country.

In May 2018, PPF has launched its headquarters. Operating out of Lansdowne, Pennsylvania, the location serve as a central hub for its surrounding communities as well as its two other branches in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. In addition, new classes and workshops are available as an extension of the services previously provided.