Organization Helps Teen Moms Find Fun, Support, and Jesus

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May 2024 Issue

By Mary Hope Roseneau
Photos provided by YoungLives


Chante Fennell has a love for young mothers and their children.  She serves as the Hilton Head/Bluffton Coordinator for YoungLives, a part of the nationally known Young Life organization.  It is an unapologetically Christian organization that reaches out to adolescents through volunteer leaders to introduce them to Jesus Christ.  YoungLives takes it a step further with a ministry to young women who have become mothers and are now faced with the responsibility of a child, while many of them are so young themselves.

Chante understands the young moms she works with. She herself had a baby very young and unmarried.  But she hastens to add that she had a strong family who stood with her and helped her along with her child.  The YoungLives organization, with its volunteer mentors, is designed to step up to be like family who encourage and lift up these young girls, who have become parents in an instant. They want to be yet another supportive person for young moms.

The YoungLives regular gatherings with pregnant and parenting teenagers include food, childcare for the baby, encouragement, sharing, life skill instruction, and of course, fun! There is even a summer camp for the young women, who attend with their babies, of course. At the end of every meeting there is a short inspirational message, as Chante said, “to share the transformational love of Christ, in word and deed, to our wonderful young moms.”

Some of the activities the teen girls engage in include crafting, learning about couponing, making a resume, baby learning games and “mommy hacks.”  There are older mom mentors assigned to each participant to help grow a relationship of trust and support growing at each get-together.  The girls soon learn their mentor acts as extended family and will walk alongside her when times get tough. 

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Chante was encouraged by her family to stay in school and keep learning. She attended the Technical College of the Lowcountry and received an associate degree in business.  She is married to Ben Fennell, and has five children, ranging from 10 to 27 years old, although only two of them are still at home. She homeschooled her children for 20 years and loved being able to get to know each child’s personality and learning style in the process. Chante admitted to struggling at times with homeschooling, but she knew it was what she was supposed to do. 

She believes being a mother of five gives her a heart for these young ladies.  God was preparing her all along, for this time and place to serve others.

The YoungLives  group in the Bluffton/Hilton Head area meets at Lowcountry Presbyterian Church Fellowship Hall twice a month from 6:30-8:15. There is a meal and childcare available, so these barriers in a young family’s situation are made easier. The first meeting of the month is called “Club” and focuses on more of the fun, games, and laughter aspect of YoungLives. The second meeting is called “Campaigners,” which includes more fun fellowship, with additional time devoted to answering questions about Christ, and His place in everyone’s life. 

Chante proudly said, “One of the highlights for us as leaders is getting to see these young moms love and care for their little ones so well.”

Get Involved:

Contact Chante at 843-252-4308 for more information and
visit their Instagram page @youngliveshhb.

The next YoungLives meetings will be May 9
and May 24 at Lowcountry Presbyterian Church,
10 Simmonsville Road, Bluffton from 6:30-8:15. 

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