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RURAL FAMILY SUPPORT ORGANISATION

General Information * Male Adolescents * The UAP2 Programme

General Information

It was in a climate of pregnant girls dropping out of the school system, their life script written off, their offspring facing the crisis of deprivation, and Jamaica, much the poorer because of the loss of its human resource, that the Teenage Mothers Project (TMP) was conceptualized.

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The project was funded by the Bernard van Leer Foundation and operated by the Center for Early Childhood Education of the University of the West Indies.

As programs unfurled it became crystal clear that there was a set of variables which impacted significantly on the problem, some of which were not being adequately addressed. Among them were:

  • family life education
  • guidance counseling in schools
  • irresponsible male behavior
  • parent child relationships

There was a need to broaden the organization's scope for more effective service delivery, and out of this emerged a registered company, Rural Family Support Organization which targets three main family issues: Teenage Pregnancy, Male Adolescents, and Child Development. The organization's sphere of influence spreads from Clarendon to adjacent parishes of Manchester and St. Catherine.

"The family as the basic unit of society, especially as the natural environment of the children's growth and well being, has the most important duty to foster and protect children during the process of development from babyhood to adolescence."

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--The World Summit 1990

Teen Age Mothers

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The Jamaican society has been experiencing a steady decline in the standard of family life and this is having far reaching effects not only on the academic achievement of children but on their total behavior. An increasing number of nuclear, sibling, visiting relationship and single parent families have replaced the original family structures. As is expected, these new family types lack the support and assistance in parenting and cultural socialization which were traditionally present in the extended family.

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The change in family structure has also seen an increasing number of teenage parents who are not adequately trained and prepared for the task of motherhood.

The growing number of teenage mothers must be viewed within the context of problems facing the poor of our society.

Teenage pregnancy cannot be seen in isolation, it must be viewed within the context of the many social ills which now plague the Jamaican society. Research (Jarrett, Knight 1988) shows that a lack of parental guidance, low self esteem and unstable family structure are three major factors which are responsible for the high incidence of teenage pregnancy. The single most important factor which has contributed significantly to the problem is men's attitude towards sexual relationships.

Contact Information

Rural Family Support Organisation
2 Brooks Edge (Off Brooks Ave.)
May Pen, Clarendon
Jamaica, W.I.
Ph/Fax: 902-3414


Rural Family Support Organisation - Promoting Family Development

General Information * Male Adolescents * The UAP2 Programme


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Uplifting Adolescents Project Phase 2

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