Homeless youth are at a higher risk for physical abuse, sexual exploitation, mental health disabilities, substance abuse, and death. It is estimated that 5,000 unaccompanied youth die each year as a result of assault, illness, or suicide.
Briana is due to give birth to her first child - a daughter she has already named "Grace." But the prospect, far from being one of joyous anticipation fills her with a dread that keeps her awake at night.
It's not because Briana doesn't want the child. She does. Desperately. And not because she is frightened of the pain of labor. She is prepared for that.
It is what happens afterwards that fuels Briana's anxiety. And there can be no preparation for that pain.
For within 30 minutes of birth, barring any medical complications, Grace will be handed by doctors to social workers. They have instructions to take away Briana's newborn baby and place her in foster care.
The 15-year-old Briana will then be transferred from the delivery wing to gynecological ward, because Department of Family and Children Services already has a foster family awaiting to receive the infant in their home, but not Briana. It will be difficult to place her with a permanent foster family due to her anxiety of being separated from her daughter.
Briana has no idea if she will be able to touch her baby, even for a minute, before leaving the hospital alone, or if she will ever get her daughter back. Her biggest fear is that she won't, and that Grace will be put up for adoption.
Briana became sexually active after she was repeatedly raped by her mother’s boyfriend at the age of 12. From that moment, Briana became a promiscuous teenager who was looking to be loved and to escape her dreadful home life.
Briana is an intelligent and articulate young girl who was sex trafficked since the age of 13 by her own mother. Briana’s mother decided that if her daughter was going to have multiple partners, then she should be paid for sexual services.
Briana does not know who the father of her child could be. She wants to get her life together, return to school, receive counseling and life coaching, and to be reconnected with her daughter. She cries often, yearning for her baby girl.
For this reason, Saving Grace Home for Teen Mothers and Their Children was born.