Even for the most prepared parents, raising a healthy and happy child is one of life's major challenges.
Having the ability to check off commonly accepted parenting prerequisites – a quality education, a good job, mental and emotional stability, a safe home – can make the challenge easier to tackle and overcome.
Unfortunately, adolescents who become parents often have a shortage of key life skills and other resources that are vital to the parenting process.
This sad reality is supported by research showing that, on average, children who are born to teen parents are less likely to ever reach their full potential.
With Black History Month coming to a close, many have spent the past weeks reflecting on the nation's civil rights movement and its leaders, including many who were active in the Mid-South.
One of the best-known, local civil rights pioneers is Memphis native Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks, who died nearly four years ago at age 85 and is buried at historic Elmwood Cemetery. Six miles away at the University of Memphis, Hooks' legacy lives on at the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change, which works to teach, study and promote civil rights and social change.
The Institute's mission is reflected in its broad range of activities, which includes conducting research, hosting conferences and lectures, and promoting and honoring scholarship on civil and human rights.
South Main was alive as more than 300 people watched 26 young poets bridge gaps between hip-hop, millennials and past civil rights movements at the National Civil Rights Museum Drop the Mic Poetry Slam.
The Saturday night (Feb. 22nd) slam, part of the National Civil Rights Museum's spring 2014 grand reopening events, was a creative outlet for youth throughout the region to express their views on freedom and involve themselves in current civil rights issues. The theme for the night was "My Freedom Is," where students from as far as Bolivar, Miss. performed poems that addressed issues such as slavery, segregation, war, poverty and education.
First place winner Markuitta Washington, a Rust College alumnae, was ecstatic about winning.
"I'm so grateful that the judges thought what I had to say about freedom and civil rights is meaningful; that's what means the most to me," said Washington.
Benjamin Crump, known to many as the attorney that represented the family of Trayvon Martin as they sought justice for his fatal shooting at the hands of George Zimmerman, will keynote The Conference on Family 2014 in Memphis on Friday (Feb. 28th).
Temple Church of God in Christ is hosting the three-day conference that will stretch through Sunday (March 2nd) at the church at 672 South Lauderdale. Attorney Crump will speak at 7 p.m.
The goal of the conference is to bring people together in a common forum to discuss today's problems and challenges of families, including how to deal with juvenile delinquency, aging parents, unwed mothers, and the social and emotional stresses of poverty.
President Barack Obama is taking action to launch My Brother's Keeper – an initiative to help every boy and young man of color who is willing to do the hard work to get ahead.
The White House announced late Wednesday that the President would unveil the initiative during an event in the East Room of the White House on Thursday (Feb. 27th) afternoon. It involves a partnership with foundations, businesses and others to make sure "that every young man of color who is willing to work hard and lift himself up has an opportunity to get ahead and reach his full potential."
Building on his Year of Action, the new initiative is pitched as another way the President will use his pen and his phone, involving both the private and public sectors, to expand opportunity for Americans.
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