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Why Partner? Because it Works!

 Founder & CEO Nicole Lynn Lewis presenting a workshop at Cardozo High School in D.C. -- a New Heights site.

Founder & CEO Nicole Lynn Lewis presenting a workshop at Cardozo High School in D.C. -- a New Heights site.

Generation Hope continually welcomes collaboration with other programs and nonprofits. By encouraging partnerships, our Scholars are provided with the necessities as well as opportunities to secure a healthy life for themselves and for their children. Not only do our Scholars benefit from the help of our community partners, but also potential Scholars are often recruited from the college-readiness workshops that Generation Hope provides in schools and organizations.

Our workshops provide expecting and parenting teens with the necessary resources to apply for college and bring awareness to our organization. In the past, we have conducted workshops at high schools and nonprofits such as: Northwestern High School, Mountain View High School, Next Steps Charter School, Clarksburg High School and organizations such as the Howard County Teen Parent Program, Community Lodgings, Alternative House/Assisting Young Mothers Program, St. Ann’s Center for Children, Youth and Families, Teen Alliance for Prepared Parenting, Arlington County Teen Parenting Program, DC Public School New Heights Program, and A Wider Circle.

To bring more awareness to our organization, we have partnered with DC Alliance of Youth Advocates, a nonprofit that advocates for youth, including teen parents. To provide our Scholars with necessities, we connected them with DC Diaper Bank and DC Lawyers for Youth.

Part of our mission includes the continuous emphasis on education, even for Scholars’ children. Recently we collaborated with Dream Dogs/Nurturing Parent Program to help Scholars learn how to interact with their children and make reading fun!

In addition Generation Hope’s CEO, Nicole Lynn Lewis has also helped to inspire teen parents by going to Bell Multicultural High School and other locations to discuss her book, Glori. Our community partner, Pen/Faulkner Foundation, is a group that promotes literacy by bringing local authors into DC public schools.

Lastly, another type of partnership is one that allows us to fundraise and recruit Sponsors/volunteers. We work with Young Education Professionals DC, DC Diverse Partners Network, and Unitarian Universalist Church of Columbia. Without our community partners, Generation Hope would not be what it is today. Thank you, community partners!

-- Jenny Ho, Program Intern 

Reaching Howard County, Md. Teen Parents

The more funding we receive, the more teen parents we can help to graduate from college.  It’s really that simple.  So, we’re pleased to announce that the The Columbia Foundation has granted Generation Hope a Mini Grant of $750 to assist with the expenses of recruiting teen mothers and teen fathers who want a degree and are living in Howard County, Maryland. 

Sandra, a Howard County Generation Hope ScholarSandra, one of our 2012 Scholars, is a Howard County resident and is studying nursing at Howard Community College.  She is the first in her family to attend college and is also the mother of a one-year-old.  Like all of our Scholars, she faces many challenges as she works towards her goals, but we’re walking by her side in this journey.  She’s receiving $1,200 a year toward her tuition, and she’s been paired with Jeananne, a caring Howard County resident who is providing the emotional support that she needs.

There are many more young parents like Sandra in Howard County who want to become college graduates.  We now have some funding to specifically reach them and to bring them into the Generation Hope family.  For that, we’re truly thankful.

For more information on The Columbia Foundation and their work in the community, please click here.

- Nicole

Out on the Town to Support our Community Partners!

Director of Operations & Programming, Kendria Reynoso, and myself at the D.C. Campaign event.Generation Hope was out on the town last week in support of other organizations in our community.   Truly making a difference requires a partnership approach – pulling our energy and resources together to keep someone on the right track, in school, or in their homes.  We partner with dozens of amazing organizations across the D.C. Metro area to support our Scholars and other vitally important causes.  

The D.C. Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy held its annual Celebrity Auction on October 13th, and thanks to the generosity of the Summit Fund of Washington, two members of the Generation Hope staff were able to attend.  It was a great opportunity to celebrate the successes of the organization – for instance, reducing the teen pregnancy rate in D.C. (not easy!) – and to look toward the future – a goal of cutting the teen pregnancy rate even more.   It was also nice to see that it all began with one person, the organization’s founder, Brenda Miller, being passionate about her vision.  So inspiring for us as we are just starting out!

On Tuesday night, we attended a homecoming event for current members and alumni of Leadership Montgomery – an awesome organization, which engages a diverse group of leaders through programs and membership activities.  The end goal is to help leaders more effectively impact the community.   We were invited by one of our Generation Hope Sponsors, Suzanne Simpson, who is also an alumni of Leadership Montgomery.   The room was packed with leaders who are passionate about improving Montgomery County in a variety of ways.  The energy was awesome!

Lastly, this past weekend, A Wider Circle celebrated 10 years of service.   A Wider Circle serves the Washington, D.C. Metro area by helping children and adults lift themselves out of poverty.  They do this through a variety of programs and over their 10 years, A Wider Circle has served more than 80,000 children and adults.   WOW.   We weren’t able to attend the celebration, but we wanted to acknowledge this huge milestone.  Congratulations to founder, Dr. Mark Bergel, his staff, volunteers and many supporters!

This recap represents a multifaceted approach to improving our communities through teen pregnancy prevention, the engagement of community leaders, and small charities doing big things to end poverty.  Congrats to all!

- Nicole

Truly Celebrate Motherhood

This Sunday, millions of Americans will honor, remember, and celebrate their mothers -- or those who have served as mother figures in their lives.  Mother's Day is a great opportunity to think about the important role of mothers -- the part that they play in molding and shaping our country's future generations.

At Generation Hope we take this role very seriously.  And we understand that it isn't always easy.  It isn't always glamorous.  And it isn't always simple.  Teen mothers, and other mothers who don't necessarily fit the mold, often experience difficulties because of their situations and negative and harmful perceptions. 

A recent story about teen mothers being arrested for peacefully protesting the closure of the Catherine Ferguson Academy in Detroit sparked our attention.  According to the National Women's Law Center, the school for pregnant and parenting students serves 300 girls every year, has a graduation rate of 90 percent, and reports that every single graduate goes on to enroll in college.  Yet, budget cuts now threaten to close this vital resource to young mothers.

This Mother's Day, please truly show your commitment to mothers by supporting vital organizations and initiatives that seek to empower and assist mothers everywhere, Generation Hope included.

Happy Mother's Day!

- GH