Pregnancy Prevention Education
Teen Choice is a school-based program to help teens delay sexual activity, reduce risky sexual behaviors, and avoid teen pregnancy. The program includes classroom-based health education workshops, intensive small group mutual-aid discussions, and individual counseling. Teen Choice was on the forefront of the AIDS epidemic, and it was the first program of its kind to include boys. Today, the program serves more than 25 schools and reaches close to 2,000 students in middle and high school.
Teen Choice seeks to clarify the often dangerous myths that youth tend to pick up from their peers about sex. Staff not only educate teens about safe sex practices and the benefits of postponing sexual involvement, but also strive to instill in them the belief that they can build positive futures for themselves through thoughtful decision-making.
Educating Positive Teen Role Models
The Peer Leaders initiative is an extension of Teen Choice, and is designed to develop future leaders. Students accepted into the program train on a wide variety of teen-related subjects that prepare them to work with peers and staff, promoting healthy relationships, family engagement, and providing sexual reproductive health referrals to local clinics.
The Peer Leaders Summer Training is an intensive, 4-week course that includes at least 60 hours of training, supplemented with social and educational outings and activities. In addition to their deep engagement with Teen Choice subject matter, Peer Leaders are exposed to social marketing theory and apply it to designing activities targeted to their peers.
Teen Choice Peer Leaders also participate in a weekend leadership retreat at the Berkshires Camp. Activities include trust- and team-building exercises to show the Peer Leaders, in a concrete way, what it takes to become a community leader and role model, and how their relationships to and within their community will change as they begin this new role.