The Dudley T. Dougherty Foundation

Pathways to Success

Grant Information
Categories Community
Location United States
Cycle Year 2012
Organization Information
Organization Name (provided by applicant) Casa de Vida
Organization Name (provided by automatic EIN validation)
Contact Information
Contact Name April Gonzales
Phone 775-329-3211
1290 Mill Street
Additional Information
Used for Casa de Vida is a private, nonprofit corporation providing residential care and support services for pregnant and parenting young women. We offer a residence for pregnant young women in need of shelter, a semi-independent, transitional living home for parenting young women and their infant children, and a Baby's Closet that provides free infant clothing, diapers, formula and other baby items for those in need throughout our community.
Benefits Since 1982, hundreds of young pregnant women have found a home at Casa de Vida, where we strive to help them secure a bright and productive future for themselves and their babies. Not only do we work to satisfy their physical needs; we also realize the importance of their emotional needs and offer a stable, loving environment where they can evaluate their life choices and make lasting positive changes.
Proposal Description Although teen pregnancy rates have declined over the past 20 years, adolescent pregnancy remains a major health concern for many American teenagers, their unborn children, and the communities they live in. Research shows that teen mothers tend to function less effectively compared to their non-childbearing peers. “There are many consequences of teen pregnancy; teen mothers are less likely to complete high school (only one-third receives a high school diploma) and only 1.5 percent has a college degree by age 30. Teen mothers are more likely to end up on welfare (nearly 80 percent of unmarried teen mothers end up on welfare). In addition, the children of teenage mothers have lower birth weights, are more likely to perform poorly in school, and are at greater risk of abuse and neglect. Moreover, the sons of teen mothers are 13 percent more likely to end up in prison while teen daughters are 22 percent more likely to become teen mothers themselves.” In addition, many young mothers tend to have more psychological problems, less stable employment, greater reliance on social assistance and welfare, higher poverty rates, more marital instability, and more frequent health problems. (Nevada State Health Division, Child and Adolescent Health. (2005). Nevada Five-Year Maternal and Child Health Needs Assessment Report: 2006-2010. Retrieved September 27, 2011, from’s/UpdatedAssessments8-05.pdf). Each year, the federal government spends $9.1 billion to help families that began with a teenage birth. Costs to states are no less staggering. In 2004 (the year for which most recent cost estimates are available), it is estimated that Nevada spent over $67 million on services related to teen pregnancy (The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, 2006,
Through its Pathways to Success program, Casa de Vida strives in addressing the underlying factors that contribute to teen pregnancy while providing intensive case management services to teens who are already pregnant. Casa de Vida aims to prevent repeat and intergenerational teen pregnancy and to counter some of the negative effects on the young mother, her child, and the community at large.
Casa de Vida would like $10,000 of funding assistance to support the Pathways to Success program. The Pathways to Success program provides no-cost housing and social service assistance to approximately 25 pregnant and parenting teens (aged 12 to 25) each year. Participants enter the program near the beginning of their pregnancies and generally exit between one and three months postpartum. For the duration of their enrollment in the Pathways program, participants receive shelter, nutrition, medical care, intensive case management, and much more.
Casa de Vida’s Pathways to Success program attempts to prevent future incidents of teen pregnancy by addressing the social factors that may have initially contributed to a participant’s pregnancy while simultaneously meeting the current and future needs of the pregnant teen in an effort to reduce some of the social costs associated with teen pregnancy. There program consists of seven goals. Goal one is that arrangements for safe, secure, affordable, and sustainable housing must be met. Two, the participant will receive consistent prenatal and postpartum medical care. Goal three, the participant will progress toward self-sufficiency through the attainment of educational, vocational, and life skills. Goal four, the participant will develop skills to increase her readiness for parenting a child. Goal five is that the participant will demonstrate appropriate newborn & self-care. Goal six the participant will have tools with which to make wise choices regarding her future by attending weekly therapeutic group and/or individual counseling sessions with staff therapist. Goal seven is identify and mobilize social service resources as necessary for post-program functioning.
In order to meet these goals, the following objectives (if applicable) must be met, participant will submit applications to local low-income housing programs and identify other possible housing arrangements and work with staff to obtain resources necessary to meet housing objectives. Goal two is met by ensuring the pregnant/post-partum participant and her child receive regular and appropriate medical care by making and attending prenatal and postpartum medical appointments as recommended by the obstetric practitioner and his/her staff and following practitioner recommendations and understanding the benefits of recommended care.
Ensuring that the pregnant teen has the educational, vocational, and life skills necessary for self-sufficiency is the primary purpose of Goal III. The participant will attend school as evidenced by school attendance records and achieve passing marks. The participant will increase of resume building, interviewing, and other employment-readiness skills as measured by independent agency assessment and will obtain suitable part or full-time employment by agreed upon date. In addition all participants will meet with staff to discuss life skills such as parenting options, personal finances, transportation, time management, and household management.
Participants demonstrate they are prepared for the emotional and physical demands associated with childrearing by meeting Goals four and five of the program. In order to meet these goals, participants engage in a variety of parenting, childbirth, and newborn care courses. Courses emphasize topics such as appropriate discipline, active listening, and developmentally appropriate play.
Participants will have tools with which to make wise choices regarding her future by attending weekly therapeutic group and/or individual counseling sessions. By establishing future goals and timelines managing difficult emotions and how to problem solve. Lastly, meeting goal seven helps ensure that the external services she needs for adequate social functioning will be in place upon exiting the program. With assistance from the staff participants are engages in programs to learn how to obtain and use resources to meet program goals and ensure future stability.
The program has been operational for the past 30 years. Casa de Vida is the sole operator of the Pathways to Success Program. However, many other agencies, corporations, and individuals collaborate to ensure successful program delivery.
Educational courses such as parenting, newborn care, and budgeting are taught on a volunteer basis by instructors from a variety of agency partners. These partners include, but are not limited to, University of Nevada, Reno, Early Headstart, State of Nevada Health Department, Family to Family Connection, TMCC Nursing, Central Reno Family Resource Center, and Renown Health. Casa de Vida operates a fully accredited adult education program in conjunction with the Washoe County School District.