BOISE, Idaho — Entering the world of parenthood is a huge adjustment for anyone, but for teen parents in the Boise area, the Booth Program for Young Parents is here to help.
The organization recently moved to a new facility in Boise where teens can go to class and continue their education while taking advantage of free on-site child care. It's a community partnership between the Salvation Army's Booth Program for Young Parents, the Cardinal Academy and New Horizon.
Kaiya Grigg, a 17-year-old mom, is now focused on getting her GED and applying to college so she can provide a life for her eight-month-old son, Dakota.
"I was trying to work, get my GED, take care of him, all at the same time while not having child care or anything like that which was really hard to do," Grigg said.
Social worker Kim Kelzer works closely with the more than 40 students on their personal goals and mental health while coordinating programs to educate each young parent about real-life issues.
"They're kind of thrust into this role at an age they're not expected to be," Kelzer said. "We have nurses that come in and talk to our students who are pregnant; right now Eat Smart Idaho is coming in and doing a cooking class. We've had banks come in and do budgeting, we've had legal help in the past."
Students also receive "Booth Bucks" for showing up to class and participating in group exercises. They can then shop the on-site incentive store and find anything from diapers and formula to strollers, hygiene products, and clothing for themselves.
"It helps out a lot," Grigg said. "Everything in there is awesome because it's like really, really cheap and you can get everything you need! Anything from laundry detergent to toothbrushes."
All items in the store come from community donations and they could always use more wipes, diapers and Pull-ups, especially in the larger sizes. If you would like to make a donation you can do so on Community Baby Shower Day June 15th at your local Albertsons store.
You can also make a donation online below or text "BABY" to 345-345.