Earlier this summer my home group started serving a meal at Parent Life once every month or two and I had the pleasure of meeting Devin. She and her husband, Mike, are fundraising support to be full time Parent Life directors, and are the go to people for the young moms and dads during the week when they need support. Fast forward a few months and I started feeling a calling to volunteer at Parent Life and finally decided to do it! I have been a mentor mom in training now for 4 weeks and am excited to partner with this awesome organization. I wanted to bring awareness to these people and how dedicated they are to impacting these teen parents through Parent Life, so we did a lifestyle shoot and I had her answer some questions about Parent Life!
Until the end of the month I will be giving a free local lifestyle shoot to anyone who donates $500 or more to Parent Life. You get a tax deduction and $75 OFF a lifestyle session that you would normally pay straight to me! All you need to do is sign up for a one time donation through this link and then email me the receipt! We will schedule your lifestyle session in January or February.
Not sure what a lifestyle session is? Click here to see three different shoots!
Lifestyle Photo Session:
Donate HERE to book your free session with me!
What does Parent Life do?
Parent Life is a holistic ministry, that shares the message of Christ in a very non threatning way to teen parents. We host classes each week, we also provide dinner and diapers to each family. We use a mentor format for our program that allows us to reach more teen parents on a more intimate level.
What are the biggest needs facing teen parents?
I think the biggest need is having Christ following adults to look up to, to show these families the love of Jesus. These parents have often been hurt by the church because of the choices they have made, instead of being embraced as God’s children who chose to give life to their babies. They also typically have many physical needs, diapers, formula, food, tutoring, etc.
How does Parent Life help meet those needs?
Parent Life mentors and staff provide encouragement, and a support system to help these families make the right choices and give their children the best shot at life. We impact two generations at a time. We also have an incentive program called the Baby Boutique, which is a room filled with new and gently used items where families earn “baby bucks” by keeping their prenatal and well check visits, report cards, check stubs and church attendance.
How did you find out about Parent Life?
In 2007 my friend told me about this spa event that this new group was hosting. I was 16 and pregnant with Kane. Free massages? I’m there!
How did this group change you?
This ministry has meant different things for me at different times in my life. In the beginning I most definitely had a huge wall up, and I was not willing to let anyone in. I also had no interest in hearing about there God. I had a “no one can tell me anything attitude”. With time those walls began to be broken down by my mentors who consistently poured into me each week which ultimately led me to a life long relationship with Christ.
Tell us about your family…
My husband (Mike) and I are a blended family. We have two beautiful boys Kane, age 9, and Ayden, age 5. We have a wonderful co-parenting relationship with Kane’s biological dad and his girlfriend, Josh & Sam. Mike and I have both been involved at Parent Life for about nine years. We felt a strong calling on our lives about two years ago to join Renee (Director/My Mentor/My Bestfriend) on staff. Having no idea what that would mean for us we submitted to Gods specific task for us, well kind of. lol. When we found out that we would be considered local missionaries and that would mean we had to raise our support to work at Parent Life we submitted verrrryyyyy slowly. God really has taken the last two years to prepare us for the journey into the mission field. We have slowly taken little steps of faith (and a few huge ones) to get to where we are today. I am partly funded and work part time as the Assistant Director. Mike is even more part time than I working about ten hours a week as our Young Fathers Coordinator.
What do you hope to change by being fully funded and full time at Parent Life?
Mike currently works about 70 hours a week between all three of his jobs. He does this because he believes in the calling God has put on us to go on mission and his position in our home right now is provider. By being fully funded my husband would be able to let go of his extra job and make an even greater impact on the 20 teen fathers that currently come to our program. He will also get to be even more involved in our at home life and be more present for our children. Renee (Director) works very hard managing this ministry that God has blessed her with. However 60 families, 15 volunteers, dinner and diapers each week is a lot for one person. I have been working part time which has been such a big help. But I desire to help carry the yoke equally with her. It is heavy at times but seeing what this ministry has done for my family makes me so passionate to help make a lasting impact on the families who stand where I have stood.