close menu
Apr 10, 2017

​Fostering Healthy Families for Young Parents

Starting a family at any age is a life-changing event, but becoming a parent at a young age presents its own unique challenges. To help young parents with this major life-changing transition, Insights Teen Parent Services offers child development and parent education programs through home visiting services.

Insights’ home visiting programs help nurture strong parent-child attachment and promote healthy development for young parents and their children. The program features a “home visitor” who meets with each family in their home weekly. The home visitor initially spends time getting to know the family. “What are your wishes for your child? What are some of the things that you had in your childhood that you want to continue with your child? What are some of the things you do not want your child to experience? According to Emily Berry, an Insights staff, “It is not helpful or effective to be forceful with topics. We want families to enjoy working with us and feel they have a safe space to talk about their parenting celebrations and concerns. This builds a strong trusting relationship and becomes the foundation for information to be shared and received in ways that create meaningful change for families.” There is no requirement to participate in home visiting services, having someone visit them in their home is always a choice.

When getting to know each family’s strengths or challenges, the home visitor pays attention to some of the common factors that may lead to abuse. Sometimes it could be misconceptions of the timing of child’s development behavior. For example, a mom may expect her child to be potty-trained at 18 months when developmentally, it does not happen until closer to 30 months. This unmet expectation can sometimes lead to stress and anger. The home visitor helps identify these stressful moments and offers opportunity to reflect and inform, developing empathy, understanding and coping skills.

A big part of the success between a home visitor and a family is developing trust. It is a gradual process, built over time. Once it is established, a young parent knows they she can have a safe conversation with a home visitor, sharing vulnerabilities and frustrations with parenting. If a parent is frustrated because her child is taking longer to learn how to walk, the home visitor offers specific activities on developing gross motor skills. This type of support can alleviate anger directed at the child and illustrate the fun of learning and mastering a new skill. Emily says, “Our goal is to be there for our young parents, offering tools and resources when requested. And to look for and create opportunities to offer supports and interventions when they will be received and guidance is needed. We build on their strengths and let them envision the type of childhood they want to give their children.”

Share:

Jan 18, 2018
Employee Spotlight—Washington Outreach Specialists

Every day our Outreach Specialists in Washington are busy serving homeless youth who have no one else to turn to. The team of three staff—Keeva Haverkost, Jessica Villasenor, and Jean Withers—work like a well-oiled machine, supporting each other so they can provide high quality service to youth. All of them are passionate about their work. Bettina Boles, Program Supervisor of The Perch and Yellow Brick Road Washington, says of her team, “Each person brings their unique contribution and special reason to work as an Outreach Specialist.” According to Bettina, the team has multifaceted roles— hosting The Perch—our drop-in center for youth—conducting street outreach for Yellow Brick Road, Washington and leading educational presentations that help the community better understand human trafficking and its impact in Clark County.

Jan 09, 2018
Youth Spotlight—Noah Schultz and his” Inspiring Action Tour”

Noah Schultz is a 25-year old graduate of the Hope Partnership program who served 7.5 years in the custody of the Oregon Youth Authority (OYA). While at the MacLaren Correctional Facility, Noah received two Bachelor of Arts degrees. Since his release in October 2016, he has become an outspoken youth advocate, with a passion to drive reform in our justice system, inspiring hope, action and humanizing the stories of the incarcerated. In November 2017, Noah completed a two-month “Inspiring Action Tour” at ten correctional facilities throughout the U.S. where he showed the award-winning documentary film about him, “Perception from Prison to Purpose.” He is co-owner of Forgotten Culture Clothing and co-founder of Verbal Escape. Noah spoke to us about his tour.

Dec 18, 2017
Sixth Grader Organizes Sock Drive For Janus Youth

Eleven-year old Quentin Brown organized a winter sock drive at his school, Cascade Heights Public Charter School, collecting 582 pairs of socks for our youth. This is his second year organizing the sock drive.

 Last year, Janus awarded Quentin the “Stars for Kids Award” for his contributions to our youth. Each year on his birthday, Quentin asks family members to give him gifts that he can donate to Portland’s homeless youth. Rather than getting toys and games, Quentin gets socks, water bottles, hats and scarfs that he packs up in a bin and brings down to the Janus administrative office. Last year, he even brought a little piggy bank with all of his savings and gave it to Janus. He has been doing this for seven years now. By thinking of the needs of others, he sets an example for his peers, family and community, showing the impact kids have on helping other kids. Quentin demonstrates that acts of kindness can be cultivated at a young age. 

Stay Connected

Sign up for our quarterly e-newsletter

View current e-newsletter

Follow Us

Search Our Site

©2013-2015 Janus Youth Programs  |  707 NE Couch St. Portland, OR 97232  |  Phone: (503) 233-6090
Staff Area  |  Federal Tax ID: 23-7345990  |  Privacy Policy   |  Site by Wooster Web Design