Route 21 is a program through Human Services Inc. currently funded by United Way of Bartholomew County that prepares pregnant and parenting teens and individuals up to the age of 21 for their lives as parents and adults. As case managers we address issues that are necessary and important to our clients, including education, health care, parenting, and networking. There are various services we provide for our clients and one of the first issues we face is education. We stress the importance of a high school education or GED/High School Equivalent and provide options and resources that will help them on their path to graduation.
Individuals that have already earned their high school diploma or GED/High School Equivalent we encourage and support them to prepare for and enter college while still being a caring and knowledgeable parent. We provide information on technical programs, certificates available in our community, and even provide them with the means to fill out financial aid forms or create resumes.
Healthcare is always a pressing issue when you are talking about pregnancy, especially teen pregnancy since they are considered high risk. Ensuring they have the proper health care or health care provider is an important step in a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. We provide and connect individuals with programs and services that address healthcare needs before and after delivery for parents and child.
Another issue our clients face is the lack of parenting skills. Young parents, though they may believe to be prepared, often times struggle with parenting issues. Route 21 supports a parent’s role as their child’s first and most important teacher, by using Partners for a Healthy Baby curriculum, plus teaching current best practice. Clients are encouraged to participate in play groups, support groups, and parent meetings, all possible through Human Services, Inc.
Networking is a major element of our program. As case managers we are always researching local organizations that may help with child care, health care, financial aid, and housing along with other services that may be needed. Finding the right organization to refer our clients to is essential, without our referrals our clients might not get the care or help they need. We work with a number of local organizations to help our client’s acquire the skills necessary to become self sufficient through intervention and education.
Fathers play a critical role in the development of their child; however, many fathers are uncertain about the responsibilities and privileges associated with this role. The Fatherhood program is designed to help fathers or father figures understand how one influences their child’s future success in school and life. Fathers who are actively involved in raising their child can make a positive and lasting difference in their child’s lives.