As a youth-serving organization, you have a unique opportunity to engage young people in conversations and activities that provide the foundation they need to make informed decisions about their futures so they can prevent pregnancy and become successful adults.
What can youth serving organizations do?
Learn about the issue and why it’s important.
- South Carolina has the 16th highest teen birth rate in the nation among 15-19 year old females.
- 43.7% of 9th graders report they have had sex. Of South Carolina teens that are having sex, more than 1 out of 3 did not use a condom the last time they had sex.
- Teen mothers are less likely to finish high school and more likely to live in poverty and rely on public assistance.
What Can Youth Serving Organizations Do
Learn how to implement a teen pregnancy prevention program that works. There are several evidence-based programs that have been found to be effective, and you can choose the one that works best for the youth you serve.
Provide opportunities for your staff to become trained as facilitators for evidence-based programs. The SC Campaign offers trainings throughout the year.
Commit to professional development for you and your staff. It is normal to feel uncomfortable talking about love, sex and relationships with young people. Attend trainings, host a workshop and increase your comfort level.
Provide an environment where sexuality, intimacy, and relationships are discussed openly and honestly.
- Ensure young people are receiving consistent messages from all adults within your organization.
- Take advantage of opportunities to use teachable moments (i.e. popular culture, media) to educate young people.
- When adolescents are close to their parents, they are more likely to consider family values in sexual decision making, more likely to delay having sex, and more likely to use birth control if they do have sex. Reinforce this message with every parent you meet.
- Remind parents that they are important. Make it convenient for parents to participate in your organization’s programs and activities.
- Help parents become more comfortable by giving them resources on how to talk to teens.
Increase community resource sharing and collaborations.
- Every county in South Carolina has community-based, youth serving programs. Know what opportunities are available, share resources and make referrals.
- Form partnerships with other local agencies and businesses to help young people see the connection between academics and future work opportunities for students. Research shows that providing youth with opportunities for work and education is critical for pregnancy prevention.
Learn how teen pregnancy affects young people in your county.