A little support can go a long way. Especially when you’ve just gotten the toughest news of your life.
Carroll High School senior, Remy Taylor, remembered the feeling when she got the news that would change her world.
“When i found out i was pregnant i cried for three hours straight,”
The young women in this room were in desperate need of that support when they found out they were going to be mothers.
‘Jus4Me’ is a program that gives young women a crash course in parenting and a second chance at success.
Program director, Gatha Haynes gave the program life when she saw that teen moms needed help. As a former young and single mother, she knows what it’s like.
“Honored to be a part,” Haynes said.
“To be the person that thought enough about them and then you know when you’ve gone through some experiences yourself knowing what that actually feels like then you can really kind of share some of their experiences.”
“Everybody’s experiences are different but if you’ve walked that mile, then you know what it’s like. “
The program started in 2015 after receiving a fifty thousand dollar grant from UnitedHealthcare.
D’Angelique Phillips is one of the many lives that have been changed for the better.
I”t’s help me manage and how to calm her and different things like that,” Phillips said.
“Different stuff that i don’t know how to do well i never knew how to do. It’s helped me
Phillips has used her pregnancy as a new motivation for success. In fact, she’s already making big plans.
“I’m already accepted into the college that i would like to go to.”
She will attend the University of Louisiana Monroe next year and major in nursing.
For Phillips succeeding is now the only option.
“Just the thought of having a daughter made me want to push harder and make sure that i was able to support her so she could also be that she can be,” she said.
52 teen parents from six different schools in Northeast Louisiana have had healthy babies and went on to pursue their education. All because someone wanted to make a difference.
“That was the intent for me based on what I’ve gone through let me just reach out and take this and make it better for somebody else,” Haynes said.
Not even two years in, those helped say it’s clear, ‘Jus4me’ is working and it’s just getting started.