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Young mum's chance to make the headlines

PUBLISHED: 11:01 03 December 2009 | UPDATED: 17:23 25 August 2010

GRILLING: Nicola Lucas interviews Howard Dawber.

GRILLING: Nicola Lucas interviews Howard Dawber.

A YOUNG mum has grilled a politician over plans for supervised homes for teenage mums. Bexley single mother Nicola Lucas decided to find out for herself the impact of Labour s proposal to provide Victorian-style workhouses for young mums. It is part of

A YOUNG mum has grilled a politician over plans for supervised homes for teenage mums.

Bexley single mother Nicola Lucas decided to find out for herself the impact of Labour's proposal to provide Victorian-style workhouses for young mums.

It is part of Headliners, a project run in partnership with The Bexley Challenge Programme, an initiative delivered by Groundwork London.

The Bexley Challenge Programme is working with young people who are not in education, employment or training (Neets) and are deemed hard to reach. The aim of the programme is to raise self-esteem, confidence and support them back into sustainable education, training or employment.

Ms Lucas and two other 19-year-olds, Amelia Tatham and Natalie Russell, headed over to Canary Wharf to interview prospective parliamentary Labour Party candidate for Bexleyheath and Crayford, Howard Dawber.

Mr Dawber told the Headliners reporters: "It is not about locking up teenage mothers, the scheme is an expansion of an existing scheme for teenage mothers who aren't living at home. It will be run by the Foyer Foundation. Teenage mothers will get support with parenting skills and getting back to work and develop a support network."

Ms Lucas, mother of a three-year-old son, said: "As a teenage mother, I would have liked to have had that sort of support. I think the scheme would be useful to teenage mothers. It's hard looking after a child on your own."

She added: "I didn't think politicians had a sense of humour. Howard was very friendly to us. It was my first ever interview as a reporter for Headliners, it was the best day of my life."

After the interview, Mr Dawber treated the young reporters to a trip down the River Thames to view the site where he hopes to work after the general election - the Houses of Parliament.

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