Boysville is answering the call for help and is expanding its residential foster care to include Teen Mothers and their child who are currently in foster care. The teen moms and child will live on our campus.
Unfortunately, Texas foster youth are more likely to become pregnant compared to other Texas teens, according to the Texas Institute for Child and Family Wellbeing at the University of Texas at Austin. This is due to a number of risk factors including trauma and family dysfunction, according to the institute. There are only five organizations in Texas that provide services for pregnant teens, and Texas is still in need of additional capacity to meet the needs of this population.
The program will care for eight teen mothers and eight infants/toddlers. The program will incorporate parent education and training through our SPARK Program (Supporting Parents and Reaching Kids) while working individually with each youth to meet educational and developmental growth.
Although we will only place females in the program, we cannot ignore that teen fathers are connected to their babies. The father may be included in the parenting classes, counseling and/or independent living skills offered to the mother. Best practices are to service the family unit, not just the child.