The product of Alisa Bell-Davis’ insights and experiences, J.A.M.E.S., Inc. (Just About Mothers Excelling in School) was established in 2006 to encourage and support higher educational aspirations among expecting and parenting teens and adolescents (up to age 24). An early parent herself, Ms. Bell-Davis recognized that completion of secondary education alone was unlikely enough to provide young parents with the opportunities they desired for their children. That’s why J.A.M.E.S. Inc. does more.
From the beginning, J.A.M.E.S., Inc. has provided a scholarship program that supports educational achievement through personal counseling, mentoring and financial support. In 2008, the unique Educational Doula program was established. An Educational Doula provides one one one targeted physical, emotional, and informational support to at-promise scholarship recipients before, during, and after the achievement of educational goals. In some other communities, the work of Educational Doulas is accomplished by parents, relatives, and close friends who have experienced success in educational endeavors. These models are too often unavailable to J.A.M.E.S., Inc. clients. Hence, the need and benefit of the Educational Doula program. The agency has consistently served both women and men.
By 2014, after J.A.M.E.S., Inc. had a record of successes and challenges, and it became apparent that mental health was a major factor for young parents and families. The focus of the organization expanded to provide mental health services, including case management, to its client population. The mental health function is carried out by trained professional counselors whose clinical work is supervised by a lead psychologist/counselor. Using a business model that fully recognizes the independence of the contracted counselors, J.A.M.E.S., Inc. now provides professional development opportunities to emphasize counseling efficacy as the foundation of client, counselor and organization success.