My journey with YoungLives started almost eight years ago. I became a mother at the age of 18 when I gave birth to my son. Right after I turned 21, I decided I wanted to encourage and work with teen mothers in some way. I knew first-hand how important it was to have a strong support system when bringing a child into the world at a young age. YoungLives fell into my lap and after attending the first barbeque I knew this was something I had to be a part of.
Over the years I have attended many clubs. I have played games, sang songs, eaten lots of delicious food and watched mothers grow up alongside their babies. The most important thing I have witnessed month after month is the lives that have forever been changed because of messages shared and love shown through volunteers.
This past month was no different. Every month YoungLives club has a theme, and the month of February is obviously the month of love. When talking about February and love most people think of valentines and the romantic kind of love. While those things are great, there are many other kinds of love that can be celebrated: love for a friend, love between a parent and child, and the love shown to us by our Heavenly Father. All of these different kinds of love were celebrated at YoungLives this last month.
I am still overwhelmed when I think of all the volunteers who showed up to make this night so special for our teen moms and babies. Hair stylists came and offered to give the children haircuts. I watched as some of the babies I have known since birth received their first haircuts ever. After eating homemade tacos and hearing an important message on what sin is, the moms were asked to split up into small groups so the fun could begin.
Volunteers had set up different stations for the moms to participate in. The stations included make your own floral bouquets, a makeup and eyebrow bar, pictures in front of valentine’s backdrop, and a hair braiding station. While the moms moved between the different stations, mentors held their places at the table to go deeper into the conversation of the message that had just been shared.
My heart melts thinking of the mothers walking out of club with their hair braided and smiles on their faces holding handfuls of flowers and heart shaped cookies. All of these gifts were such blessings, but at the end of the day the best gift we can give to every mom, dad and baby who walks through the door is the gift of God’s love showing through us. I have personally seen this love poured out month after month and because of this my life will never be the same. I am so grateful to be a part of this ministry. ♥ Cassandra Snook ~ YoungLives Mentor