Parents Too Soon (PTS)
Bureau of Child and Adolescent Health
Division of Community Health & Prevention
Illinois Department of Human Services

Program Description


New and expectant teen parents in several communities


To provide support and assistance to teens who became parents


Services focus on nurturing relationships between mother and child, improving the health and emotional development of the teen and her child, delaying subsequent pregnancies, and completing school. The Department's grantee is the Ounce of Prevention Fund, which oversees 21 community-based sites.

Delivery Method

Weekly home visits, peer group meetings and community education

Program Data

SFY03* SFY04* SFY05* SFY06* SFY07
Program Expenditure (Numbers in 000's) $2,227.1 $2,135.4 $2158.2 $2191.7 $2265.3
Number of Grantees 1 1 1 1 1
Number Served 847 812 878 881 947

*Program Expenditures and Number Served corrected to reflect the actual data for the Parents Too Soon program, rather than the Parents Too Soon Division, which contains other programs.

Program Accomplishments

  • Breastfeeding rates among PTS participants were significantly higher than rates among the population of teen parents in general. 58% of teen parents in PTS initiated breastfeeding as compared to 45% of teen parents in the general population. 52% of those who had initiated breastfeeding continued to breastfeed at six weeks, as compared to 31% of teen parents in the general population.
  • Six of twenty-two PTS programs began screening participants for depression in FY 2007; programs developed response protocols and identified mental health service providers prior to initiating the screening process. Initial data indicates that about 30% of the mothers screened had signs of depression, which is much higher then the percentage of depressed mothers identified in programs that do not conduct screenings.