It's even more challenging for teenagers who become pregnant.
Thanks to the Teen Mom program of CHRISTUS Health Shreveport-Bossier, these young ladies have support growing up, while raising a growing child.
That encouragement is especially important for girls just entering the program.
"I was angry because I didn't have any friends that I could talk to that had babies,” said Alexis Coleman.
Now she has a support group of friends and mentors.
They meet each week to learn important life skills.
"We've gone grocery shopping. We've learned how to coupon. We've done scrap books,” added Coleman. “Everything we've done has helped me and I've learned how to deal with my emotions in a positive way."
Young mothers join the Teen Mom group when they become pregnant and they stay until they graduate high school.
The goal is to help girls graduate and avoid getting pregnant again until marriage.
"With this program they're able to stay on track,” said Yolanda Thomas, Teen Mom mentor. “They're able to build self-esteem so that they're able to accomplish their goals."
"I think I would have never made it without the help of Teen Mom because it really did help me. I probably would have given up back then,” said Kajerika Pouncy, Teen Mom participant. “I'm thankful for the strength they put on me to keep going."
The Children's Miracle Network supports the Teen Mom program. The telethon takes place June 1, 2014 on NBC 6.
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