The Importance of a Teen Moms Program
It’s tough enough to be a teen for most young adults. However, teens who are pregnant or parenting certainly face an entirely new set of unique challenges. They may lack support from family, face struggles to finish high school and often have a complex journey ahead to find suitable housing or medical care as they plan their next steps. (Alongside the emotional weight of becoming a parent at a young age). The full value of an active teen moms program or teen parenting program is difficult to calculate, but here are some points to consider as you help share the word about the YWCA St. Joseph JUMP program:
What a Teen Moms Program Can Offer to Young Mothers (and Young Fathers):
Teen parents typically have yet to finish their high school or college education. A teen moms program that facilitates this goal is important. Girls who complete their education have a greater opportunity of becoming financially secure. Teen moms who want to finish school must find a way to balance competing demands on their time, energy, finances and emotional resources – and a teen moms program can aid and guide them in seeing this goal become a reality.
Programs like the JUMP program offers help with all these areas, plus encouragement from others who are on the same journey. This can mean guidance from skilled parent volunteers or mentors. It can mean educational resources such as classes on child safety. It can also mean opportunities to gather with other young mothers facing similar challenges.
Together with St. Joseph Youth Alliance and MOSAIC, the St. Joseph YWCA offers a teen parents program for our local community called JUMP. JUMP stands for Journey to Unite Mentors and Parents, and it is a mentoring program and so much more. Our mentors are all volunteers from the community who have been screened and trained to come alongside girls during teen pregnancy and early motherhood. Mentors attend monthly training sessions along with their partnered parent. Our program also includes visits to the home, playgroup opportunities and even specialized classes from community experts. Girls who attend meetings can earn incentives, like useful childcare items, as well many other tools for their parenting journey.
The JUMP program is open to pregnant teens or teens parenting a child under the age of three years. Having a stable, supportive, trained adult who is committed to helping young moms gives teen mothers (and teen fathers) a jump start on successful parenting and adulthood. Teen parents find confidence as they gain skills, learn to plan and discover that they are not alone on their journey (and that their journey is the beginning an entirely new chapter of their lives).
How You Can be a Part:
If you would like to find out more about making a difference in the life of a young mom, we’d like to talk with you about becoming a JUMP Mentor. JUMP is the only support program of its kind in our community and the surrounding area. This is a volunteer role that involves changing lives first-hand and helping establish a bright future for teen parents and their children. We look forward to talking with you about the possibilities. Contact us today at the St Joseph YWCA at 816-232-4481.