“I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.” ~ Rabindranath Tagore
In my work as the Executive Director of the Peacemaker Family Center at Trinity Church, I have the unique opportunity to work with an amazing and diverse team of people. One of the programs we are currently implementing in Miami-Dade County, Florida is the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program. Funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, our Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program team of 34 people provides life-changing, and oftentimes, life-saving information to junior high and high school students concerning HIV/AIDS, STDs, and teen pregnancy.
Miami-Dade County currently has the highest rate of new HIV cases reported in the United States. Many of these cases are found in young adults. My team of educators teaches classes in Miami-Dade County Public junior high and high schools every day of the school year. This year, we will educate 3,000 students using evidence-based curriculum and a creative marketing campaign we have titled, “Future Ready.”
This initiative is focused on helping teens understand the consequences associated with at-risk behaviors that lead to HIV/AIDS, STDs, and teen pregnancy. Our goal is to reduce the teen pregnancy, HIV, and STD rates among teens while helping them plan for a bright future. Working with teens is not easy work, but it is a joy to watch them come to life with new ideas about what their future could look like.
You can follow our work on Instagram at: @planbemiami
(photo credits: Cool Creative, Inc., PlanBe Rally,May 12, 2016)