Inspira Health received the 2023 Momentum Award for Partnership from the Acenda Institute of Health Innovation (AIHI). Launched in 2022, Momentum Awards recognize individuals and organizations who are paving the way for the future of behavioral health care delivery.Read More
Being a teenager can be a full-time job in itself. For those who become a parent during their teenage years, the responsibilities escalate at lightning speed. Teenage pregnancy can be a challenging experience, but with the right support and resources in place, adolescents can complete their education and maintain an independent lifestyle while raising their babies. Inspira IMPACT’s Parent Linking Program is funded through the New Jersey Department of Children and Families and provides guidance, education and support to young parents at Vineland High School. The goal of the program is to eliminate repeat teen pregnancy, increase high school graduation and to reduce the incidence of child abuse and neglect.
Inspira IMPACT’s Parent Linking Program
A collaboration between Inspira Health and the Vineland Board of Education with support from Prevent Child Abuse NJ, Inspira IMPACT’s Parent Linking Program offers the following services free of charge to any pregnant or parenting student enrolled in Vineland High School:
- Full-day childcare (PLP Childcare program has earned Grow NJ Kids four-star quality rating)
- Transportation, which can often be a barrier to teen parents receiving education
- Parenting classes, which help young parents navigate the competing demands of parenting and personal goals, and help develop healthy co-parenting relationships with their parents and partners. These also count toward high school credits
- Case management, connecting students with various resources throughout the community
- Life skills education finances, job skills, home care and stress management
- Educational support to help ensure timely graduation and preparation for higher education
- Peer connections with other young parents to foster healthy relationships and a sense of belonging
“We know how critical our services are to our students’ success,” said Brenda Smaniotto, Administrative Director of Inspira’s IMPACT programs. “Students spend 1-2 periods with us per day and earn 5-10 high school credits for participation. We continue to work with our students for up to 2 years after graduating.”
“While it is estimated that only half of young mothers graduate high school on time, I am proud to say that 95% of PLP teen parents graduate high school and 90% plan to attend college.” said Smaniotto. “Furthermore, 98% of our young parents have not had a second pregnancy during their adolescent years.”
IMPACT’s PLP extends its services into the summer months with programming such as play groups, story times, and prenatal classes. Students also have access to case management during this time.
Prevent Child Abuse NJ hosts Parent Linking Programs at eight schools across New Jersey. To learn more about Inspira IMPACT’s Parent Linking Program at Vineland High School, click here.