- Local Impact
Strong Tomorrows: Tulsa Program Serving Teen Parents Receives Financial Support
|Strong Tomorrows, a program providing support to expectant and parenting high school students in Tulsa, announced it is expanding its programming in fall 2017. With financial support from the Tulsa Area United Way and the George Kaiser Family Foundation, the program will expand to two additional high schools.
“We’ve experienced a high level of success with Strong Tomorrows in our pilot phase over the last three years,” said Omare Jimmerson, program director at Strong Tomorrows. “We know there is a great need for the kind of support our program provides, and we’re grateful for this additional funding so we can continue to expand while helping Tulsa teens be successful parents and students.”
Strong Tomorrows is a school-based initiative that identifies and serves both mothers and fathers in junior high and high school by providing one-on-one case management for participating students, as well as education and training on a host of topics including prenatal care, child birth, career planning, health and high-quality child care.
"We have been impressed with the track record of this new initiative,” said Mark Graham, President and CEO at the Tulsa Area United Way. “This year, 15 out of 16 participating seniors received their diplomas and are on the path to successful parenthood, and we’re proud to be helping this program grow to serve even more students in the future."
Strong Tomorrows currently serves teen parents attending Nathan Hale Junior and High School and East Central Junior and High School. With a combined $327,000 in funding provided by Tulsa Area United Way and George Kaiser Family Foundation, the program will expand to Central Junior and High School and McLain Junior and High School, and it will also allow Strong Tomorrows to place one full-time employee to focus specifically on serving young fathers.
“We are so grateful to GKFF and the Tulsa Area United Way for helping to ensure that our pregnant and parenting teens get the supports they need to be successful in college, careers, and life,” said Dr. Ebony Johnson from Tulsa Public Schools.
Since launching in 2014, the program has operated in partnership with Tulsa Public Schools (TPS), under management of Communities in Schools (CIS) MidAmerica with four key target outcomes: improving access to healthcare for parent(s) and child, improving graduation/college/career readiness, improving parent engagement/involvement and improving enrollment to high-quality child care centers.
“GKFF is excited to partner with TPS and the Tulsa Area United Way on this dual generation approach to serve expectant and parenting teen families,” said Kimberly Butler, senior program officer at the George Kaiser Family Foundation. “It is a great opportunity to improve access to high quality early childhood education for the children of teen parents, while simultaneously increasing the chance for parenting teens to graduate high school career/college ready.”
For more information on Strong Tomorrows, contact Omare Jimmerson at firstname.lastname@example.org.