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The first option is deciding to keep your child and to raise it until adulthood as his or her parent or primary care giver. The benefit of parenting is that your child will stay with you, his or her biological mother and/or parents. This will meet the cultural needs of your family and ancestors, and you can apply for a child care grant if you are struggling with money and resources.

However, you may lack the finances and family support you need to raise a child on your own. Although you are legally entitled to stay in school you may find it difficult to do this and still care for your baby. You may feel isolated, resentful and stressed, and be subjected to ridicule and the stigma of being a teenage mother or single mother in your community. If you are still very young yourself, you may experience some challenges in raising a child, as you are still a child yourself.

To help you make this decision, it is advisable that you get hold of a counsellor, social worker or child protection organisation or your local representative of the Department of Social Development who can assist you. To find an organisation close to you, please click here. Alternatively, please contact our call centre on 0800 864 658 for immediate assistance

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