"A teen pregnancy strains families, sometimes rips them apart," says Susan Ray, residential counselor for Catholic Charities Hawai'i Family Services' Mary Jane Program. "I've never had an intake without tears." The program (which also assists adult women) offers a safe, nurturing place to stay during pregnancy and for up to four months after giving birth, by matching them with caring host homes.
The Mary Jane Program is one option available in the community to help teens through a rocky, emotional time. With an unplanned pregnancy, teens face three choices, each one painful: to abort, to adopt or to parent. Here are some community resources available for pregnant Hawai'i teens and their families to get help in making decisions and finding needed support:
- Hui Malama Ola Na 'Oiwi -- Hawaiian health services. Hilo, (808) 969-9220; Kona, (808) 323-3618; Waimea, (808) 885-0489; Ka'u, (808) 929-9700; Kohala, (808) 889-1709.
- Planned Parenthood of Hawai'i (O'ahu, Maui, Big Island). Honolulu, (808) 589-1149; Kahului, (808) 871-1176; Kailua-Kona, (808) 329-8211.
- Family Planning Office, Department of Health. Referrals to regional clinics and community resources statewide. (808) 733-9030.
- Hawai'i Pregnant and Parenting Teen GRADS Program. Offered in 45 schools statewide, providing pregnant and parenting students with child care, health, careers and life planning to foster economic self-sufficiency. Peer educators are also available to speak on risk behaviors and to direct teens to community-based resources. (808) 394-1331.
- The Hawai'i Teen Prevention, Pregnancy and Parenting Council. Advocacy, information and referrals to services available on various islands, c/o Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies. (808) 951-5805.
- Kalihi-Palama Health Center. Educational outreach, confidential counseling and protection. (808) 848-1438.
- The Mary Jane Program. Connects pregnant teens with caring host families. (808) 261-9776.
- State Department of Health Community Adolescent Services. Information and referrals for counseling, housing, child care, food and medical assistance. (808) 733-8339, (808) 733-9044.
- Teen Intervention Program, Kapi'olani Medical Center. Educational outreach, counseling, prenatal and parenting classes. (808) 973-8501.
- Bay Clinic/Ka'u Family Health Center. Primary health care and confidential family planning services for teens. Uninsured welcome. Na'alehu, (808) 929-7311; Pahoa, (808) 965-9711; Hilo, (808) 969-1427.
- Malama A Ho'opili Pono. Cultural Caring for Families. Pregnancy counseling, testing, medical care, insurance and other needs for teens and adult women. North Hawai'i/Honoka'a, (808) 775-8870; East Hawai'i/Hilo, (808) 974-4291, (808) 933-0788; South Hawai'i/Na'alehu, (808) 939-2437; West Hawai'i/Kealakekua, (808) 322-1522.
- North Hawai'i Women and Children Services and Teen Pregnancy Task Force. (808) 885-9318.
- Teenage Pregnancy, Prevention and Parenting Support (TAPPPS) in Hilo. Linking teens with available community services. (808) 959-8679.
- Community Clinic of Mau. Comprehensive health care, including for homeless low-income clients. (808) 871-7772.
- Hana Community Health Center. (808) 248-8294.
- Hui No Ke Ola Pono. Serving Native Hawaiians on Maui, with offices in Wailuku and Hana. (808) 244-4647.
- Maui Family Support Services. (808) 242-0900. Women Infants Children (WIC) Program. Pre- and post-natal care, nutritional education and supplemental food. (808) 241-3080.
- Pulama I Na Keiki (Alu Like). Offers information and support for pregnant teens in schools, covering prenatal care and nutrition, and post-birth parenting, child care, insurance and other issues. Wailuku. (808) 244-8849
- Women Infants Children (WIC) Program. Pre- and post-natal care, nutritional education and supplemental food. (808) 241-3080.
- Moloka'i Family Planning Project and Women's Health Center, Kaunakakai. (808) 553-3276.
- Moloka'i Family Support Services. (808) 553-3276.
- Kaua'i Community Health Center. Comprehensive health services for low-income clients, including family planning and perinatal care. (808) 246-3511.
- Hale 'Opio Kaua'i. Counseling, emergency shelter for youths in crisis. (808) 245-2873.
- Ho'ola Lahui Hawai'i. Serving Native Hawaiians and immigrants on Kaua'i and Ni'ihau, (808) 246-3511 (Lihu'e).
- The Malama Kaua'i Project. Community outreach, counseling, information and referral. (808) 241-3427, (808) 651-8023.
- National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. (202) 478-8500. firstname.lastname@example.org, www.teenpregnancy.org.
- Teen Line, information and referral messages: Peer listeners are available to talk with callers weekday afternoons toll-free. 1 (800) 521-TEEN (8336).