Yoli, 16, in the home of a couple who are hosting her and her baby while she continues high school in Glen Mills, Pa. on Dec. 10, 2023. "I struggled with the pregnancy," she says. "One of my doctors said, 'You’re not going to make it. You have to decide if it’s the baby or you.' "

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Winner: 2024 Reviewers Choice Award

A Migrant Teen Mom Three Thousand Miles From Home

Emily Whitney | PA, United States

Yoli is sixteen-years-old and had her first child, Mateo, in December 2023 in Pennsylvania. She came with her father to the US from Mexico when she was nine-years-old through a frightful journey and after years in school and working in the mushroom fields of Kennett Square, Pa., she became pregnant at the age of fifteen. She was initially leaning towards having an abortion, but decided to keep her baby and is now raising him while living with her father.

For Yoli, most relationships with her family were severed seven years ago when they came to the US. Now, she faces the decision to focus on her education, pursue citizenship, or return to Guatemala to raise her son with the support of her mother who she has not seen since she was a baby. Her dream is to be reunited with her mother, and the sting of loneliness grows stronger as she soon will lose her father when he leaves the US.



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