Parents are expected to serve as role models for their children, but we rarely stop to think about how parents develop the skills to fulfill their role. These expectations are especially tough on teen parents trying to care for their children before they have graduated from high school or figured out how to care for themselves. In San Bernardino County, Cal-Learn prepares teen parents with both the structure and incentives to meet these challenges and puts them on the path to self-sufficiency. Walden case managers work one-on-one with each teen to set goals, and develop a plan for graduating from high school. They also work with the county to connect young parents with child care, transportation, school supplies and other resources.
Teens enrolled in the program earn rewards for maintaining their GPA, completing their resume, and applying for college, trade schools or employment. They also earn rewards for developing the skills to nurture their children and meeting personal goals. These rewards can be redeemed for childcare necessities, such as diapers, wipes, bottles, and educational toys and books.