Since 2007, Youth For Christ Lubbock has been mentoring teen moms and dads in weekly parenting support groups through YFC’s Parent Life ministry. But over the last year, COVID-19 has prevented the Parent Life ministry from meeting face to face for weekly group.
Our YFC Lubbock leaders know the families they work with often struggle with access to resources like diapers and food and often depend on these weekly meetings to be a stable source for getting these resources. So when meetings stopped, the YFC Lubbock staff formed partnerships with local businesses, churches, and individuals to set up a weekly drive-up service at the YFC ministry center where local teen parents and their families could pick up dinner to go along with diapers, wipes, and other baby items they needed.
“Being a single mom during COVID has been difficult,” one of the teen moms said. “But knowing that Parent Life has still been there through all the changes and the hard parts has made a huge difference for me.”
Local Chick-Fil-A owner, Brandon Mulkey, is one partner who has helped YFC Lubbock’s Parent Life ministry continue meeting the needs of the local families throughout the unpredictability of the pandemic. Chick-Fil-A has donated dinner once a month to feed 50 YFC Lubbock Parent Life families over the past year.
“We are so grateful for the many people like Brandon at Chick Fil-A who have partnered with us during our weekly dinner and diapers drive through over the last several months,” Renee Morales, YFC Lubbock’s Parent Life Director, said. “Not only are we able to connect our families to these physical resources, but it gives our staff a way to still connect with them on an emotional level in a COVID safe environment.”
Local churches and individuals in the community have also helped YFC Lubbock keep their baby boutique stocked with diapers and other baby essentials for families so they would not go without.
“We might not be able to meet in our weekly small groups, but when they drive up to pick up diapers and dinner, we get a quick moment at the window of their car to connect with each family,” Renee said. “We can conduct a mini emotional health check-up. We can ask them how their week has been, if there is any help or support that they need. We can ask how we can be praying for them. The diapers and food are great but checking in and offering prayers are really the tools that are enabling us to remain connected to our Parent Life families during this very isolated time in our city.”