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Read more below and learn how you can support the Building Futures Campaign in Boise, Idaho
For 96 years, we have been helping very young mothers in Boise. Initially operating as a maternity hospital for unwed girls, today The Salvation Army operates the Booth Marian Pritchett School Program for Pregnant and Parenting Teens to help teen parents stay in school and graduate. Thanks to the community's support for this program has been able to help nearly 10,000 girls and their children. However, the building has long outlived its useful life and the neighborhood has changed significantly since the school was first built. In order to ensure we are able to help teen parents graduate from high school and be self-supporting adults we must build a new modern facility that will sustain the teen parent program and expand The Salvation Army's other services to meet the need for families working hard for a brighter future.
Parenthood is the leading cause of school dropout among teen girls - 70% of teenage girls who give birth drop out of school. In Ada County alone, 250 teen girls give birth each year. Numerous studies have demonstrated that the consequences of a pregnant or parenting girl dropping out of school and never earning her diploma are devastating to both her future and her child's and the cost to society is significant.
Our totally unique school program serves an average of 75 girls and 10 boys in grades seven through twelve annually. The average age of students is 16. One hundred percent of students qualify for free lunch and approximately 30% of students are refugees. TSA partners with the Boise School District and nineteen additional community organizations and businesses to provide teen parents with the academic, parenting, life skills, and on-site child care resources proven to help at-risk pregnant and parenting teens graduate from high school and to go on to post-secondary education or employment.
The Salvation Army's 2011 comprehensive services and facilities assessment recommended that a new campus be developed to consolidate the Army's programs and services into multipurpose buildings specifically designed to provide a more efficient and effective delivery of services and to support the significant and sustained increase in demand for its service. In response to this assessment, we have developed a plan for a new, modern campus, to include a new community center in an underserved area in West Boise (on Emerald between Mitchell and Maple Grove).
The new campus will more than double the capacity of the School Program for Pregnant and Parenting Teens, and expand the types of support the Army provides to enrolled students and their young children, including two new early learning and preschool education classrooms.
The community center will offer education, recreation, arts, social, and spiritual programs for youth, adults and seniors. Expanded hours will allow for access to our life skills classes at times when our clients need them the most (evenings and weekends) and most importantly, it will be a warm, safe and welcoming place for youth and families to come together and engage in enriching family activities. Initial conservative estimates put usage of the new school and community center at 88,000 visits in the first year alone.
In order to provide the space necessary for the expansion of our programs to meet the community's need, two multipurpose buildings have been designed to have a 100-year structural life span and operate with maximum flexibility, energy efficiency, and minimal maintenance costs.
Centrally located in the Treasure Valley on the western boundary of the City of Boise, the new campus is easily accessible by two major bus lines. Additional access via safe sidewalks, bike lanes and adequate parking at the facility allow for multiple modes of transportation.
We would love to have you visit our campus and see first-hand the challenges we face in our current facilities and discover the hope and promise that new modern facilities will provide for at-risk youth and families in the Boise area with the types of help, encouragement and education they need to live self-sufficiently.
The construction of our multipurpose building, gymnasium and athletic fields will serve the Boise area for the next 100 years and this new center will transform the neighborhood and those living around it, by providing a facility to house the social, recreational, educational, spiritual and cultural amenities we hold dear to our hearts and our values here in the Boise area.
Please do not hesitate to contact our Director of Development, Hillary Betz at 208-383-4231 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to arrange a tour or for more information about how you can help make the new Booth School Program Campus and Community Center a reality.