There are many organizations in Orange County that are helping people not only survive day-to-day but also make a better life for themselves. Fristers is one of those organizations.
Fristers is a non-profit group located in Irvine, California that helps teen parents and their children. Many teen parents find themselves trying to raise a child with no knowledge of how to begin while trying to continue their education. With the help of Fristers’ free programs and services, teen moms and dads get the education, resources, support, and access to role models they need to succeed.
One of the programs that Fristers offers is life coaches for teen moms. These life coaches provide a support system for teen moms that would otherwise be lacking in their lives. Life coaches also teach everyday skills and parenting skills that teen moms need to succeed. Fristers has helped many teen moms get their high school diploma, enroll in college, and learn to be independent and responsible young women.
Fristers also supports teen dads by teaching them the skills they need to be good fathers and role models. Teen dads also get the help they need to find jobs to support their children as well as guidance to enroll in college or vocational training.
While teen moms and teen dads can get individual support, there is also a couples group available to teach teens how to build healthy relationships. The program aims to help families grow together as well as provide safe events that families can do together to strengthen their bond. Teens who take part in the couples group also learn anger management and conflict resolution skills.
The children of teen parents also get the help they to succeed from Fristers. The Kidsters program provides children of teen parents early education curriculum as well as intervention services. All children who take part in the program have access to two developmental screenings per year to assure they are reaching the appropriate milestones. Preschool-age children receive assessments twice a year to make sure they are ready for Kindergarten.
Fristers fosters success
Fristers has helped hundreds of young men and women who say they would not be as successful as they are today had it not been for Fristers. In 2018, the organization equipped and empowered 211 teen moms and improved the lives of 571 parents and children.
Elyse is one of many teen moms who received help from Fristers. Elyse had her daughter when she was 15 years old. Although she had support from her family, Elyse said she often felt isolated from her peers and felt as though she would never achieve her goals.
With the encouragement from Fristers, Elyse not only graduated high school but also went on to college. She has learned how to become a better mother and has received help in writing a résumé and applying for jobs. Elyse says Fristers not only helped her succeed but also helped her gain the self-confidence she desperately needed.
Volunteer with Fristers
For Fristers to operate and succeed, it relies on volunteers. There are many opportunities to take advantage of if you want to get involved with this group. They include:
- Helping children with their letters, numbers, colors, and shapes
- Bringing in dinner or dessert for a monthly meeting
- Bringing cake or cupcakes for birthday celebrations
- Adopting a group during the holidays to provide a meal
Fristers also welcomes community partners who want to offer their assistance. In the past, community partners have provided meeting spaces, meals, sponsorships and grants, and pro bono services as well as volunteering their time and talents.
If you would like to volunteer with Fristers, click here. To support Fristers with a financial donation, please click here. It is only with the help of volunteers and supporters that Fristers can continue to help teen parents and their children thrive.