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Local Organization Helps Young Moms
DAYTON -- In Montgomery County alone, there are 800 births a year to teen moms. When you add in 20 and 21 year olds, that number increases to nearly 1,200. For more than 30 years, the Dayton Life Resource Centre has targeted this group to help them become the best mothers they can be.
Babies are hard to keep up with. No one knows that better than young mothers without resources or support.
"I was raped when I was 14, so that's how I have my son. I didn't want him to be in foster care so I stepped up to the plate," Dayton's Danyelle Potter said Monday.
Now 18, Potter found the Centre and their prenatal and parenting classes.
Once a week young moms learn the ins and outs of raising a child and making good decisions everyday.
"It makes them feel not so alone when they see other girls are going through the same challenges, then they see other things we offer like the baby pantry," Parenting Education Director Elaine Bonner explained.
Bonner says the pantry, filled not just with food, but with bottles, diapers, clothes and educational toys, served 2,200 babies in 2013.
"I'm not gonna say this is easy. This is hard work. But when you see one or two succeed you see the work is valid and needed," Bonner added.
Jessica Brandenburg of Dayton was 17 when she found the Resource Centre.
"The biggest struggle was not knowing what I was supposed to do," Jessica said. "Learning my responsibilities as far as bathing or that kind of thing. How to take care of a kid."
Seventeen years later, Jessica's daughter, Justice, is preparing to graduate high school a year early. Justice broke the cycle and will be the first woman in her family to walk across the stage with her diploma and without a baby.
If you or someone you know is a young mother or expectant mother who needs help, contact the resource center at 937-461-3625.
Miami Valley Crime StoppersIf you have information about a crime that has occurred, call Miami Valley Crime Stoppers at 937-222-7867 (STOP) 800-637-5735, 24 hours a day. Callers can remain anonymous.
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