The NEFL Teen Pregnancy Task Force reconvened for the first time in almost two years on January 30 to review their community action plan, develop priority areas for moving forward and review the progress of agencies implementing strategies, including those participating in a mini-grant program.
In November 2011, the NEFL Teen Pregnancy Task Force released “Preventing Teen Pregnancy in Northeast Florida: A Plan for Community Action” after a year of monthly meetings, reviewing best practices and selecting strategies. Since then, progress has been made in the teen birth and STI rates and organizations throughout the region have been implementing strategies, including eight agencies awarded competitive mini-grants from the Coalition.
The Coalition funded qualified providers in Baker, Clay, Duval, Nassau and St. Johns counties to implement specific strategies outlined in the action plan. The grants were funded through a partnership with the Jacksonville Jaguars Foundation and Florida Blue. The foundations each provided $50,000 to the Coalition for these efforts. The first year of grants runs from April 2013-March 2014. An RFP for Year 2 of funding will be released this Spring. 2013-2014 grantees:
- APEL Health Services – $8,000 – “Project YouthLink Expansion,” Improving Access to Adolescent Health Care
- Baker County Health Department – $10,000 – “Parent Perspectives in Baker County,” Engaging Parents
- The Bridge of Northeast Florida – $15,000 – Healthy Choices,” Community-based Teen Pregnancy Prevention
- Girls Incorporated of Jacksonville – $16,000 – “Straight Talk – Preventing Adolescent Pregnancy,” Community-based Teen Pregnancy Prevention
- Lutheran Social Services of Northeast Florida/Second Harvest Food Bank – $20,000 – “Health Begins Before Birth,” Repeat Teen Pregnancies
- Nassau County Health Department – $7,000 – “Rural Teen Health Initiative,” Access to Care
- PACE Center for Girls, Jacksonville – $15,000 – “Straight Talk Health Clinic,” Improving Access to Adolescent Health Care
- Stork’s Nest of Jacksonville – $4,000 – “Stork’s Nest Program,” Repeat Teen Pregnancies
- Women’s Center of Jacksonville – $5,000 – “Let’s Talk,” Engaging Parents
Priority areas and areas of interest for moving forward that were identified at the January meeting include: incarcerated youth, racial and gender diversity in sex education, prioritizing teens in the Healthy Start program, reaching parents and convening national and local experts in teen pregnancy prevention.
The Task Force will now meet three times per year to review progress.