WHO WE SERVE
Madonna’s Center serves the youngest, most vulnerable, at-risk families in Clackamas County – teen parents and their children. We are not a crisis pregnancy center or an adoption agency. We are not a maternity home, shelter or drop-in center. We serve teens (ages 19 and under, with children up to age 3) who do not have adequate support – using a unique approach.
Madonna’s Center is a volunteer-run organization. The mission to serve teens who are “with child” and without essential support is driven by a caring community, who is willing to get more involved and be called into action. Showing genuine concern and a strong commitment to support teen parents and their children, encourages them to work towards goals of self-sufficiency.
Madonna’s Center is a public benefit, charitable 501(C)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization, completely supported by the generosity of others. We receive public support in the forms of in-kind donations and cash contributions from individuals, groups,clubs, businesses, churches, corporate foundations, and grants.
We, at Madonna’s Center, believe that a healthy community can be achieved only if every person is granted the fundamental right to life and has equal access to the levels of well-being necessary for full human development and dignity – starting with food, safe shelter, clothing, education, health care, meaningful employment, and good working conditions.
We believe, in particular, the disadvantaged members of society, should be given opportunities to become active participants in the decisions and policies which most affect the quality of their lives.
We believe that our responsibilities to each other, in the human family, transcend differences in age, race, ethnicity, nationality, socioeconomic status, religious beliefs and ideologies.
To serve teens who are “with child” and without essential support.
In our mission statement, the term “with child” includes an unborn child, a newborn babe in arms, a toddler in tow, and could possibly be a preschooler or in kindergarten.
This means, depending on the timeframe in which a teen parent becomes a Madonna’s Center program participant, their child may be at any age or stage. In fact, the majority of children who benefit from our ongoing support are 1 to 3 years old.
The scope of our services is ONGOING - not just a temporary hand-out, but a real hand-UP, until the teen parent turns age 20 (and is no longer a “teen”).
Madonna’s Center is a public benefit, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, charitable nonprofit organization.
WE ARE VERY PROUD OF . . .
Madonna’s Center has supported Naily since she was pregnant with her son, Alyne, at age 15. At 16, she enrolled into a high school program and at 17, she married Jose’. While she persevered towards achieving her HS diploma, her husband worked at whatever job he could find.
Naily discovered she has a talent for hair styling, and at age 18 enrolled in a beauty school. Soon after, she found out she was pregnant. When her daughter, Leyla was born 2-1/2 months premature, Naily put her schooling on hold to be at the hospital everyday and also take care for her family. While on a leave of absence from beauty school, she also got a certificate to be a chiropractor’s assistant.
Eventually, with ongoing support from Madonna’s Center and her husband’s work, she was able to complete beauty school and is pursuing state certification to work in this field. Now, after her 20th birthday, she is no longer eligible for our services. But, she is still part of the “family, because even though she is very busy with her family life, fulfilling her household duties, and trying hard to become employable, she also finds time to serve as a volunteer at Madonna’s Center!
If you would like to help Naily get a jumpstart on her career and see this young family continue to succeed, please email your contact info and any employment “connections” to email@example.com
TEEN PARENTS WORK TOWARDS
THEIR OWN HOUSING SOLUTIONS
Not having a place to live is a primary concern for teen parents. Nearly every week a teen parent calls the Madonna’s Center office because she got “kicked out” or is about to be “kicked out” of whatever living situation she is currently in. A maternity home is not the answer to their housing concerns. And, they prefer not to move in with “strangers”. But, house-hopping or couch-surfing doesn’t provide stability for themselves or their children. Plus, those teen parents who manage to get into apartments find it very difficult to pay rent each month, and oftentimes face eviction or electricity shut-off notices.
In addition, the Fair Housing Laws are not fair to teen parents, as AGE is not a protected class in these laws. Thus, programs which provide housing options for adults with children are eligible to receive funding support, but not to put a roof over the heads of minor-aged teen parents with children.
Last year, Madonna’s Center applied for and was awarded a CCHD (Catholic Campaign for Human Development) grant for the purposes of addressing the social injustices related to housing for teen parents and their children. The Board formed a committee of teen parents served by Madonna’s Center to lead this effort. Now, they are “raising the roof” by holding community meetings to raise more community awareness about their housing needs and hope to identify solutions for one of their greatest challenges – to have a place to live, with their children.
For information about an upcoming community meeting – see the flyer link below. Also, to continue receiving updates on this project, please LIKE Madonna’s Center on facebook.
Let’s RAISE the ROOF!
The primary purpose of Madonna’s Center is to support teens, who are parenting without essential support during their child’s prenatal to preschool ages, and who are interested in achieving stability and self-efficacy.
Our programs are designed to:
- Foster opportunities to acquire safe housing, quality health care, education, job training and employment, in order to help teen parents to obtain a sufficient lifestyle for themselves and their child(ren)
- Provide interim or temporary means to fulfill basic needs when no other community resources can be immediately accessed or readily identified
- Identify gaps in existing community services and to advocate for establishing additional or enhanced programs which will more adequately fulfill their specific basic needs
- Facilitate equal access to currently existing community services which are already designed to adequately fulfill their basic needs through a comprehensive, integrated network of charitable programs and social services delivered largely by qualified, trained volunteer staff.
Madonna’s Center is committed to offering easily accessible, teen-friendly services and dedicates itself to being aware of the most up-to-date information about helpful resources in the community.
To best serve teen parents and the local community, Madonna’s Center strives to avoid replication, duplication or competition with other social services who perform the same purpose(s) or function(s).