Young Mothers Program, Chelsea
The City of Chelsea has an amazing talent working for them – and this talent developed right here in Chelsea. The beginning, though, was far from smooth. Yeni came to Chelsea from Long Island at age 15, after being bullied about her pregnancy. “They said that I wasn’t going to be a good mother, that I had to get rid of my baby because I was too young.” Yeni moved in with her aunt, but didn’t know her well so she struggled, feeling as though she had no one to support her.
Then Yeni was handed a Roca card at bus stop one day. At first, she didn’t believe Roca could do much for her. “There was no support not even from my family. So I said to myself, ‘How is Roca going to support me?’” But after going into the program, Yeni found the help she had been missing.
Roca’s Young Mothers Program showed her how to care for her baby, how to be a mother, and most importantly, how to continue to further herself. “The number one thing for them was for me to keep on going to school,” Yeni says. There were days when she wanted to give up but Roca was there to encourage her to keep going. Her youth worker would tell her, “you have to do this for yourself and you have to make your daughter proud.” Working at Chelsea City Hall, she’s making her daughter – and all of us – so so proud.
“Roca was my mother, my father, was my family and it will always be.”