Community Baby Shower Educates Expecting Mothers

By Ronelle Williams |

Published 08/17 2014 07:09PM

Updated 08/17 2014 10:50PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Teen pregnancy in Buchanan County is on the rise, ranking as the 9th highest in the state.  To help raise awareness about the number, a local group held a community baby shower last week.

"Our teen moms who can be a little bit more vulnerable to things as far as not having stable housing, not having a degree yet.  We really wanted to find as many supportive services within the community so that they have the ability to be supported and make it through school," said Head Start Director Whitney Lanning.

Head Start of CAP St. Joe held the community baby shower this past week, the first one that St. Joseph has seen.  Although the focus was to bring awareness to teen pregnancies, it was also to celebrate pregnant mothers.

"It's really to celebrate having a baby.  It's for all income levels.  It's really just to make sure that new parents know about the services that are available in the community to help support them and be really excellent parents," said Lanning.

Representatives of child services were also at the shower to educate mothers about available support in St. Joseph.

"We just want to get a lot of vendors together so that they could prepare young parents for what's available in the community to best support them," said Lanning.

Like any baby shower, there was cake, punch, and even a raffle to win gifts.

"After they learn a little bit about the program that the provider has to offer they're also given a raffle and then they can come through the middle and put their raffle ticket in front of the gift that they'd like to try to win," said Lanning.

This was Yesenai Torres' first baby shower and she says the experience is one she will always remember.

"It's very good to see all the moms and receive the information that I didn't know about.  It's kind of nice, from St. Joe," said Yesenai Torres who attended the baby shower.

The community baby shower will be held each year going forward.  Organizers hope it will get bigger and better in the years to come.

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