What Changing a Life Feels Like in Harrisonburg, Va.

What Changing a Life Feels Like in Harrisonburg, Va.

Wyman recently went on the road to listen to the breakthroughs our partners are experiencing as part of the Teen Outreach Program (TOP).

As one of the 68 partners in Wyman’s National Network, James Madison University offers the innovative, evidence-based approach throughout Harrisonburg, Va. Teens here face poverty, disconnection with their families, or serve as translators to their loved ones who have recently immigrated to the U.S. But through TOP, they’re growing stronger, becoming more confident and working to change their communities.

Watch this video to learn more about their experiences.

 

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Your Voice Is Needed Before Teen Pregnancy Prevention Dollars Are Cut

Your Voice Is Needed Before Teen Pregnancy Prevention Dollars Are Cut

TLP Grad (125)

 

Last week, the full House Committee took action to eliminate TPPP funding. Yesterday, portions of the Senate — the Senate Appropriations Labor, Health and Human Services and Education (LHHS) Subcommittee — worked to pass its version of the bill, which aims to cut critical programs proven to reduce teen and unplanned pregnancy.

Specifically, the bill:

  • Cuts funding for the evidence-based Teen Pregnancy Prevention Programs from $101 million to $20 million, which is an 80% cut.
  • This funding has supported programs – like Wyman’s Teen Outreach Program (TOP)– that have been rigorously evaluated and proven to change behavior.
  • It also increases funding for abstinence-only programs from $5 million to $20 million, which is a 300% increase.

Our time to act is now.

We must use the power of the National Network to influence tomorrow’s vote by the full Senate Appropriations Committee to ensure the longevity of these important programs. It’s in the Senate where actions by the House have been stopped.

What You Can Do to Take Action

  • It is critical to weigh in with your members of Congress on the value of the TPPP programs, particularly if they are on the Senate Appropriations Committee.
  • We need to make noise if we want these programs to exist next year.
  • Please ask them to fully fund evidence-based Teen Pregnancy Prevention Programs at $101 million for FY 2016.
  • To view your Senators, click here.

In addition, you can:

  • Send an alert to others in your network asking them to contact elected officials. Feel free to use this language to make it easier.
  • Ask young people you work with to lend their voice – they can write letters to the editor, send emails to elected officials, and use social media to encourage their friends to contact their elected officials.
  • If you have a board members or other friends who have a good relationships with your congressional delegation, encourage them to weigh in – a quick phone call or email from someone well connected goes a long way.
  • If you haven’t already put your name on this letter circulated in November 2014, emailrfey@thenc.org to be added.

Other Resources

  • The National Campaign’s statement on the House LHHS bill.
  • TPPP talking points.
  • A blog and chart pointing out that the decline in the national teen birth rate was twice as large in the four-year period since TPPP started, compared to progress in previous four-year periods. While there are certainly many things that have contributed to the declines in teen childbearing, this accelerating progress is notable.
  • Survey findings demonstrating wide public support for the evidence-based TPPP.
  • November 2014 letter from more than 100 national, state, and local groups demonstrating broad support for maintaining funding for evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention programs.
  • For state specific information about teen and unplanned pregnancy, and TPPP grants going to the state, see here.
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Transforming Teens, Changing Communities

Transforming Teens, Changing Communities

Wyman’s Teen Outreach Program (TOP) empowers teens with the tools and opportunities needed to avoid risky behaviors – like teen pregnancy – and become leaders with a powerful vision for their future. In addition, TOP enables adults to harness and enable the spirit of the most vulnerable teens and influence community-level change, thanks in part to TOP’s unique focus on reconnecting teens to their communities through transformational community service learning opportunities.

Within, students, TOP facilitators and administrators discuss the life changing results they’ve witnessed as part of the TOP program.

Featured are: Estelle Raboni, TOP Program Director in the Bronx; Velva Dawson, Deputy Director, Central Jersey Family Health Consortium; Risa Clay, Principal, Red Bank Regional High School, N.J.; Jorge Benavides, TOP Jr. Facilitator, Red Bank Regional High School; Aisha Murray, TOP Program Manager in the Bronx; and Riana Katz, Red Bank Regional High School.

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