May 2017
May is National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month! Its purpose: to dispel the myth among teens that, "It can't happen to me." The resources provided through the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancies help teens understand that they can control their futures and avoid risky behaviors. Click here to learn how to get involved!
Everyone Can Help Prevent Teen Pregnancy 

How Parents Can Help
How Parents Can Help

How Health Care Professionals Can Help
How Health Care Professionals Can Help

How Faith Leaders Can Help
How Faith Leaders Can Help

Click here to view an infographic that breaks down the work that still needs to be done to address adolescent pregnancy prevention.

The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy has a wealth of information, including research and digital campaigns, for teens and those who work with teens. This organization hosts two sites, Bedsider and Stay Teen, aimed at helping connect teens and young adults to the information and resources they need to make healthy decisions surrounding sex and relationships.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has data, information, and resources for community members, youth, and professionals that work with pregnant and parenting teens. Visit their website for information related to teen pregnancy prevention, including the effectiveness of long-acting reversible contraceptives for teens.

The Office of Adolescent Health (OAH) is dedicated to improving the health and healthy development of adolescents. OAH leads by promoting strengths-based approaches, and bolstering multi-sector stakeholder engagement. OAH supports research, prevention, and health promotion activities, training, education activities, and partnership engagement. was created by the Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs, composed of representatives from 20 federal agencies that support programs and services focusing on youth. It promotes positive, healthy outcomes for youth by providing interactive tools and resources for youth-serving organizations, identifying and disseminating strategies to promote teen health, and supporting enhanced collaboration.
Teenage Pregnancy & Parenting
Did you know that the month of May is all about the power to control your future? As National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month, we want teens to understand that they have the power to decide if, when, and under what circumstances to become pregnant. In this newsletter we talk about teen pregnancy and how organizations and trusted adults like you can support teen pregnancy prevention.  

Risk of Teen Pregnancy
You may be happy to know that the rates of teen pregnancy and childbirth have declined by 55% over the past 20 years and are now at historic lows. However, U.S. rates of teen childbearing remain far higher than other comparable countries'. In fact, roughly one in four girls will be pregnant at least once before age 20 and about one in five teen moms will have a second child during her teen years. Significant disparities also persist across racial and ethnic lines, geographic regions, rural and urban areas, and among age groups. Lesbian and bisexual teens are also at risk of unintended pregnancy.

Adolescent pregnancy and parenthood are closely associated with a host of social and economic issues that affect teen parents, their children, and society. Teenage parents are less likely to finish high school, and are at greater risk of living in poverty, depending on public assistance, and experiencing poor health. Their children are more likely to suffer health and cognitive disadvantages, come in contact with the child welfare and correctional systems, live in poverty, drop out of high school, and become teen parents themselves. In 2010, teen childbearing cost the U.S. $9.4 billion.

Supporting Teens who are Pregnant or Parenting
Although the statistics may not be in a teen parent's favor, it is critical to let them know that with the right support, they can not only be a great parent, but they can still reach their personal goals related to education, a career, and whatever else they wish to achieve. There are plenty of resources available designed to help teen parents better understand their rights -- including their educational rights -- and to help them get the support and services they need.

It is also important to talk to pregnant or parenting teens about avoiding a subsequent pregnancy. Nearly 20% of teen births are repeat births. There are many reasons for this, including a dearth of effective sexual education, difficulties accessing effective contraceptive options, and often an overall feeling that "their life is over" or that people have given up on them.

Parent Power
One of the most consistent findings over the years has been the power of parental influence. In survey after survey, teens say that their parents are most influential in their decisions about relationships and sex. Notably, however, parental influence wanes as young people grow older. Fortunately, resources exist for parents looking for ways to have a conversation with their teens about sex. The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy has ten tips that can help.
Local Resources

SHIFT NC (Sexual Health Initiatives For Teens) is a statewide nonprofit leading North Carolina to improve adolescent and young adult sexual health. By increasing awareness, disseminating data, improving policy, supplying professional development, and providing leadership, they are empowering North Carolina's professionals to support healthy teen development. 

The   South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy,  t hrough mission-based focus areas of training and technical assistance, public awareness and advocacy, and research and evaluation, aims to build the capacity of local communities to address teen pregnancy within their own neighborhoods. They are transforming South Carolina by training youth-serving professionals, initiating communication within families, and advocating for grassroots programs that will educate and empower teens .
New Blog Post!

In this blog post, " Keep the War on Science away from Proven Teen Pregnancy Prevention Programs," Jen Herrick from the People for the American Way discusses the need to continue funding evidence-based policymaking to continue the work to prevent adolescent pregnancies in the U.S.

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