St. Louis, MO [Jan. 12, 2015] – The Office of Adolescent Health (OAH) has announced millions of dollars’ worth of new grant opportunities to fund proven programs that fight teen pregnancy, while promoting positive youth development and engaging the community. Grant submissions are due April 1.
Wyman, a national nonprofit that provides tools and training to transform teens and communities, offers the Teen Outreach Program® (TOP®) for those interested in completing a grant submission. TOP is an implementation-ready youth development program that builds teen leadership and resilience while reducing risky behaviors.
Through the work of more than 300 providers in 35 states, TOP is one of the most successful, cost-effective and highly respected programs for teens nationally.
TOP lowers teen pregnancy while improving student performance.
- 53 percent lower risk of teen pregnancy.
- 52 percent lower risk of suspension.
- 60 percent lower risk of class failure.
- 60 percent lower risk of dropout.
TOP addresses a national epidemic:
- Children of teen parents are more likely to become teen parents themselves, dropout of school and live a life of poverty.
- Dropouts are more than eight times as likely to be in jail or prison, and there are approximately 1.2 million high school dropouts in the U.S. each year.
- The country would save approximately $17 billion in healthcare costs over the lifetimes of each class of dropouts had they earned their diplomas.
“Choices like dropping out of school and teen pregnancy lead to lifelong consequences for teens – and for society,” said Joe Miller, Wyman’s Senior Vice President of Partnerships and External Affairs. “The secret of our success is that the program addresses the root of the issue – supporting not only teens, but the educators and systems that surround teens.”
During the last round of teen pregnancy grant offerings by OAH, 18 organizations successfully received funding by working in collaboration with Wyman. These partners have witnessed results at the teen level, and also have reported that the training they’ve received has built their capacity as educators, helped them ignite system-level change and helped them improve teen and adult relationships.
Several success stories of TOP in action can be found on the OAH website, including:
- Changing the Odds in the Bronx: According to OAH, the program “Made students more likely to use a condom (70 percent), to use birth control (58 percent), and less likely to have sex (47 percent). The program also helped students “make good choices about their health and well-being (86 percent of 6th graders and 86 percent of 9th graders).”
- Increasing Self-Confidence and School Safety through Community Service at Planned Parenthood of the Greater Northwest.
- Using Text Messaging to Reduce Teen Pregnancies with Denver Health and Hospital Authority.
Packaged in four levels for each developmental stage from 6th to 12th grade, TOP helps teens build a foundation of healthy behaviors, life skills and a sense of purpose. TOP combines a unique blend of:
- Implementation-ready engaging curriculum.
- Interactive youth environments.
- The opportunity to build social emotional skills critical to lifelong success, like self-awareness, empathy, communication, leadership and resilience.
- Positive adult guidance.
- Opportunities for teens to sharpen their newfound skills during community service learning hand-selected by each TOP group.
Over 13.5 million young people live in poverty. In the last five years, Wyman has improved the lives of 125,000 of these teens in similar circumstances thanks to the collaboration of its partners.
To learn more about how to implement TOP in your community and begin an application for OAH funding, visit Wyman’s new website, www.TeenOutreachProgram.com. The site also houses TOP case studies, sample curriculum, research and partner benefits.