Local non-profit helping teen moms one day at a time

Reported by: Samantha Boatman
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Updated: 4/24/2014 10:13 am
RENO, Nev. (MyNews4.com) -- Teen pregnancies affect families across the country, but here locally there's an organization that's there to help teen moms during and after their pregnancies. 

It's called Casa De Vida and they are completely non-profit. The organization relies on donations from businesses and private donors.

"It's hard when you might be in a situation where your parents are either fed up with you or can't parent you themselves," said April Gonzales, the Executive Director of Casa De Vida.

Gonzales says the girls who come to the home range in age from 12 to 25. Four beds in the house are empty right now, but can turn into a home for a teen at anytime. Eight teens can live in the home, there's also a family therapist and a house mom.

"A lot of the girls who start here don't want to be here, we have rules it's a house and we have rules and some of them might not be used to that but once they leave they always understand why we had the rules and they always come back and visit," says Gonzales.

Gonzales says the girls go through parenting classes, they also learn how to get a job so they can support themselves and their child once they leave the home.

"Success is kind of dependent on a lot of different things, our main purpose is to bring in healthy babies," says Gonzales.

Once the children start growing up, there's a house next door called "House Of Hope" where two teens can live and raise their children. 

Just below the maternity house is another great resource for all families, Wanda's Closet.

"Wanda's closet is kind of a hidden gem. It's basically here to fill that "in between" need of working pay check to pay check everything is gone on Thursday but they need to have diapers to last them through Saturday," says Gonzales. 

Everything in the boutique is available free of charge. They offer everything from stuffed animals, clothes, shoes, socks, even baby formula.

"They're just thankful, they're thankful that they can come in and receive the items that they couldn't afford for their children," says Gonzales.

Gonzales's hope not only for Wanda's Closet but also the non-profit "Casa De Vida" is to help these teens when they don't have anyone else she wants to remind families, "it can happen to anyone."

Those with the organization are there for teens when it does.

If you'd like more information on Casa De Vida, head to (775) 329-1070. Or you can visit www.casadevidareno.org.

Wanda's Closet is open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10am-3pm. You can drop-off donations at that time. If you'd like to shop, you're allowed to do so once every three months and you have to have a photo ID and the child's birth certificate.
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