Who we are
Young Mom Support began in 2010 as a social support group for pregnant and parenting teens, with monthly meetings in Masiphumelele and Driftsands. We’re a registered non-profit organisation (NPO: 093-008).
As the demand for our services has grown, we are moving towards a services model where the moms themselves will be trained to take ownership of their small community groups, as well as continuing to provide online support via email, chat and phone to pregnant and parenting teens around the country. We also provide workshops to schools on the topics of teen pregnancy and teen parenting and sexuality.
What we do
Young Mom Support aims to provide a safe, healthy and non-judgmental environment for young mothers of all races, cultures, religions and family situations to socialize with their children.
We hope that having a stable group of friends with the same priorities and interests will help to beat the loneliness and isolation that sometimes comes along with being a young or teenage mom, no matter how good (or not) your family support structure might be.
Every mom is different
I’ve learnt that it’s very important to realise that each mom is different and not to assume that they come to us because they are struggling or not coping.
Instead, we provide a stable and non-judgmental environment in which they can be themselves, grow as parents and speak of their frustrations and fears, long BEFORE they get to a point where they feel like they’re not managing. It’s an informal, friendly, non-intimidating setting where the moms and group leaders get to know each other as friends, equals – mother to mother.
Established, “older” mothers are always advised to look for support in their communities and family structures, to take time for themselves and to be realistic in their idea of what being a “good mother” means – and urged not to feel guilty about it.
Younger mothers have many of the same stresses and fears (and possibly more) than other mothers – they need the same support, the same amount of rest and “me-time”, the same opportunity to be heard and respected for the work they’re doing.
Isolation, judgment, loneliness, lack of material, physical and emotional support damages a mother’s ability to parent correctly – not healthy for mom, not healthy for baby and not healthy for society which has to live with the consequences of poorly-parented children.
Help the mothers before it gets to that point. Acknowledge and respect those young moms who are doing it right.
We are out there, and we deserve recognition.
We are different
Young Mom Support offers something to different to other teen pregnancy focused organisations.
As a teen mom myself, I understand what pregnant and parenting teens are experiencing. I’ve been there. We are a secular organisation with no religious or anti-abortion agenda. We do not advocate one particular choice over another. We are led by the young woman we’re speaking to, asking relevant questions about her personal circumstances and trying to find out what she wants, what she is capable of and most importantly, offering practical advice about how to succeed, no matter what she chooses.
We understand that not all teen moms are the same – and that there is no such thing as “that kind of girl”.