Invincible Mamas Pushing Action & Change Together
IMPACT is a national advocacy network being formed and led by young mamas from across the country. It is the result of research conducted by young parents focusing on the challenges they face and their ideas for change.
In 2018, with funding from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the eight members of the Young Parent Advisory Committee (YPAC) from Montana, New York, New Mexico, Los Angeles, Bay Area -California, and Mississippi engaged in participatory action research with the goals of: determining key areas of policy and program needs, identifying gaps in current young parent-led advocacy efforts, and determining interest /need for more young parent-led advocacy.
YPAC crafted and implemented a research approach that included listening sessions, individual interviews, and an online survey with custodial young parents across the country. A total of 65 racially/ ethnically diverse current and former young parents, who had children at age 17 or younger and up to 23 years of age, participated.
Today, YPAC is known as IMPACT and is powered by a group of young mamas of color from California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Montana, New Mexico, North Carolina, New York, and Oregon, including three tribal nations. The network is committed to identifying and eradicating the biased policies and broken systems that hinder their ability to support their children and achieve economic security.
United by their shared lived experiences of oppression, discrimination, and exclusion simply because of their age, IMPACT is building a national advocacy network of young mothers to give voice to the needs and potential of young families. Currently in two states, IMPACT is developing and will pilot a community hub model focusing on advocacy and support to ensure that national policy reflects the realities of the lives of young families in communities across the country. Additionally, in the future, they are looking for ways in which to involve custodial young fathers.