About The Mama Club
Aggieland Pregnancy Outreach, Inc. (APO) partners with the YoungLives ministry of Young Life Brazos Valley to create "The Mama Club." The Mama Club is a faith-based, non-judgmental environment where teen moms (pregnant and parenting) can come together for support and encouragement. In this program, the teaching, fun activities, and friendships all focus on the very distinct needs of teenage parents (single parents under age 21) and their children.
Children of teen parents face a 70-80% higher risk of suffering abuse or neglect within their home. The goal of the Mama Club is to help teen moms become more self-sufficient, confident, mature, giving, and self-aware young women. In turn, they will place the needs of their children above their own, thus reducing the chances of child abuse and neglect. These mothers find the strength to make protective and positive choices for their children's lives. Because of the efforts of the Mama Club, the teens who participate stand a better chance of becoming productive community members and attentive as parents.
Teen moms come with their children to "Mama Club" at the APO office on Thursday evenings from 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. in the Fall and Spring. They enjoy a hot meal generously donated each week by small groups, churches, and civic organizations in our community. After the meal, the children go to our free nursery where they play and are supervised by seasoned Moms and volunteers. Play houses, tunnels, riding toys, books, toy cars and dress up clothes all make for a fun time. While the children are playing, the teens return to the education room and have fun watching skits, participating in games, receiving door prizes, and hearing a talk related to their stage of life.
"Open Mic" allow the girls to share their lives and learn from each other. Small group discussions help the girls and mentors get to know each other better and explore how to use the night's teachings in a personal way. At the end of Club, they go to the "Mama Closet" and receive free diapers, wipes and free baby items! APO acquires diapers and wipes through the Brazos Valley Food Bank as a partner agency, at a cost of $0.10/ pound. We stock the Mama Closet with gently used baby clothing and equipment donated by generous community members.
The teen moms can also earn "Mama Bucks" at Mama Club each week and later spend them at the "Mama Store" which contains new baby clothes and baby equipment. Mama Bucks can be earned just for attending Mama Club. They can also be earned by memorizing a Scripture verse if they want, and a name of God and its meaning. Additionally, teens can earn Mama Bucks by practicing the parenting tip for the week. Up to nine Mama Bucks can be earned in a night from all the available activities. It can be very exciting for a girl to be able to "purchase" a new stroller, bouncer seat or car seat at the end of the night. Donations from businesses and community members stock the Mama Store.
If this adventure of supporting pregnant and parenting teens sounds like your cup of tea, please contact Victoria at Victoria@PregnancyOutreach.org or Vickie Thomas at VickieThomas@PregnancyOutreach.org for more information, or go to our volunteering page.