The “Crossroads for Teens” is a broad-based community program that teaches about the risks of pregnancy, dropping out of school and the social challenges that await them if they go down the path of becoming a teen mom or dad. The kids learn there is much more to a teenage pregnancy than having a child, it’s about learning what that role will look like and what awaits them. They see first hand how that responsibility will impact their success in the future and the future of their child. This 5-session curriculum seeks to empower teens, their families and their surrounding community by working toward the following goals:
We cover the importance of communication between a father and his family. Stressing how mothers have a significant impact on their children’s learning and behavior. How there comes a point in their lives when they must figure out who they are and how they must overcome the communication barriers that exist in order for their families to break free of the negative cycles that are blocking them from becoming a better person for their families.
Time and Commitment
We stress that a relationship is based on quality time. In this session teens learn that what they do speaks louder than what they say and that they must use their time wisely to be good role models for their children. Ultimately they come to learn that if they do not take the time to influence their children, someone or something else will.
Here the teens discuss the need to take family responsibility seriously. Teens come into their role as parents when their child is born and learn how to address the different and complex aspects that come with fatherhood. Unfortunately in today’s world the family dynamic is growing more and more complex with the stresses of blended families, financially stressed homes and the involvement of significant others. Teens must understand how to navigate these challenges in a positive and healthy manner. In the session facilitators teach the teens that parenthood is no longer necessarily based on a biological bond, but rather on the social realities of today.
Dumping The Garbage
Teens are reminded again that children will be apt to do what they do, not necessarily what they tell them to do. For this reason teens cannot expect their children to lead moral and ethical lives if parents themselves are not willing to identify and acknowledge their areas of need. This session is dedicated to helping teens take personal inventory of their character and behaviors and to commit to cleaning up these toxic behaviors that keep them from being the very best they can be for their families. Some of the areas discussed are:
- Drug Abuse
- Physical Abuse
- Mental Abuse
- Verbal Abuse
- Inappropriate Sex
Our last topic focuses on the importance of joining and staying connected to a small group. Father Matters believes that through our positive actions, examples and by learning from each other, participating mothers not only will become better parents, but more importantly, their children will have better parents.
The Crossroads for Teens sessions are similar to the “Fathers Mentoring Fathers” sessions in that the same five areas are covered but they are tailored to the teen perspective.