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South Carolina to Receive More than $18 Million for Teen Pregnancy Prevention Efforts

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Columbia, SC: The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Adolescent Health (OAH) announced the recipients of their five-year (FY 2015 – FY 2019) teen pregnancy prevention grants. Of the 81 awards given out nationwide, the state of South Carolina will receive four grants totaling more than $3.7 million annually for each of the next five years. The South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy (SC Campaign) has been awarded two grants and is joined by the Mary Black Foundation (Spartanburg, SC) and The Children’s Council (Lancaster, SC), each of whom was awarded funding to provide programming in their respective communities. Combined, these programs are projected to reach more than 50,000 young people with evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention programs over the five-year grant period.

Grant funding will support dozens of partners across the state who are implementing research-proven, evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention programs in communities with the greatest need. South Carolina counties in the projects’ service area(s) include Aiken, Anderson, Orangeburg, Spartanburg, and Lancaster. An additional grant to the SC Campaign will support targeted efforts for youth at elevated risk for teen pregnancy – including youth in foster care and within the juvenile justice system.

“This is an incredible opportunity for continued teen pregnancy prevention in South Carolina,” said Forrest Alton, Chief Executive Officer of the SC Campaign. “We have made impressive progress on this issue including a 54% decline in the state’s teen birth rate since the early 90s, but funding of this magnitude will allow us to provide resources to a number of organizations across the state who are implementing research-proven programs with groups of high need young people, and see even more success preventing children in our state from having children.”

South Carolina Congressman and Assistant Democratic Leader, James E. Clyburn, released the following statement in response to the announcement of the grants. "I am pleased to see South Carolina receive funding to help expand the reach of effective teen pregnancy prevention in high need communities and strengthen teen pregnancy initiatives in those same populations," Clyburn said.  "I look forward to watching the progress the South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy makes with these awards, and I continue to be proud of their focused approach across the state.”

Alton credits sustained partnerships in both the public and private sector for the state’s success and encourages those partners to stay involved moving forward. “While we are excited about South Carolina’s ability to leverage significant federal dollars to support statewide teen pregnancy prevention efforts, we know that it is the sustained commitment from public and private funding sources, and strong partnerships with youth serving organizations across the state that has made the difference in our state over the past two decades.”

To learn more about OAH’s new Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program grantees, click here.