Saturday evening, the community gathered at the Ashbury Center to enjoy an evening of entertainment and good food for the “Success is On the Rise” Banquet and silent auction fundraiser. The event hosted a mired of talent as well as allowing a spiritual moment to honor God.
Beginning promptly at 5 pm, Claudia Williams, President of Teen Empowered Mentoring Parent Program, Inc. took a moment to welcome everyone and introduced the Mistress of Ceremony for the evening.
As the evening progressed, the crowd was entertained by wonderful singing and praise. “This is our fourth fundraising event and the money goes to help our young mothers and children with medical expenses and other needs,” said Mrs. Williams.
TEMPP provides an array of services to teenage parents, (mother and father) under the age of 21.
“We provide mentorship, guidance and opportunities through mentoring, life management skills, and job readiness preparation to allow teen parents the ability to create a healthy environment for themselves and their children and to become productive citizens,” Said Williams
“We’ve already received permissions from the Department of Education in Tallahassee that we can start our school. So we are looking at another year of preparation and will be opening our school, Claudia S Williams Christian Private School for Teen Mothers in 2018-2019.” She said. The school will encompass grades 6 through 12. “We actually have a vast population of Middle School teen parents in
Escambia County. I want to one day, provide mentorship for every one of them. Our research states that if every teen parent had another supportive adult, then they are apt to be successful. They will graduate from school and their children will graduate from school. We are having problems with our babies being ready when they come to kindergarten. So, with programs like this, you have a jump start and we are helping these teen parents get their children ready.
There are currently fifteen girls in the TEMPP program. “We are in the process of partnering with Mr. Norm Ross and the school district to get the girls from the school district,” stated Williams. The program is structured for young men also. “Sometimes it’s hard to get our young men into the program. Sometimes they think they know it all and they sometimes are a little resistance.“
Williams went on the say that they also receive students from Project Connect. “This is similar to a transition program for the young guys and we’ve been very successful with that program.”
TEMPP is a non-profit, 501©(3) organization established to provide an array of services including mentoring to teenage parents, mothers and fathers under the age of 21. TEMPP is a community based mentoring program. “We are always looking for mentors for our children. If you think you could share a little of your time to mentor one these young ladies, you won’t regret it,” she said.