AUSTIN, TX — July 26, 2022 — (NOTICIAS NEWSWIRE) — Effective August 1, The Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy (statewide), Ntarupt | North Texas Alliance to Reduce Unintended Pregnancy in Teens (Dallas), and Healthy Futures of Texas (San Antonio) are merging to improve the well-being of young Texans through equitable access to sexual health education and resources.
A New Solution
The merger follows a two-year planning period and a historic track record of collaboration to advance their common mission of reducing unintended teen pregnancy through access to evidence-based sexual health education and resources. Working together, the organizations were instrumental in advocating for improved health education curriculum standards that will go into effect this coming school year and helping school districts implement high-quality sex education. Statewide collaborations include: Texas Is Ready, the Texas Foster Youth Health Initiative and many statewide youth programs and Youth Advisory Groups.
The newly formed organization will move forward under the name Healthy Futures of Texas to enhance its new statewide four-pronged approach to closing gaps in sexual health education and resources affecting young Texans and young adults, especially people of color.
The new non-partisan, statewide 501c3 organization will focus on this four-pronged approach:
– Education: provide evidence-based sexual health education and reproductive health information for teens, parents, caregivers, and youth-serving professionals.
– Advocacy: advocate at the local, state, and federal levels for public policies that increase young Texans’ knowledge and access to sexual health information and resources, including contraception and prevention of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and improve access to preventive healthcare for women.
– Awareness: create public conversations about adolescent sexual health among young Texans, caregivers, educators, and policymakers.
– Research/Data: serve as the expert in research and data insights for young Texans’ sexual health.
The new four-pronged systems-level approach prioritizes closing the inequities and improving health outcomes among the most vulnerable populations with disproportionately high teen birth rates, such as older teens (18-19 years); Hispanic and Black youth; those residing in rural areas; those who have experienced trauma and/or have foster system involvement; and youth who have already had an unintended pregnancy.
The Power of Three
“Our three organizations are merging because the time is NOW to create a new approach to ensure access to sexual health education and resources for every young Texan,” said Evelyn Delgado, CEO of the newly formed Healthy Futures of Texas. “Teens and young adults in Texas face multiple barriers to accessing preventive reproductive healthcare and contraception, including lack of insurance coverage, a confusing maze of safety net programs, and sex education that is often insufficient or non-existent. To close the gaps in healthcare, educational opportunities, and access to life-changing sexual health resources, we must address the inequitable systems that persist in many Texas communities, inequities that disproportionately impact some more than others.”
While our previous focus has been on teen pregnancy prevention, the new Healthy Futures of Texas will continue to promote positive health outcomes for adolescents by expanding sexual health education and advocating for access to quality and affordable sexual and reproductive health services, including contraception and sexually transmitted infections.
Through the merger, the new Healthy Futures of Texas is increasing the footprint of its impact in Texas. Parents, caregivers and families, school-age youth, higher education, faith communities, school districts, and community-based youth-serving organizations all have a critical role in achieving this goal.
“Data shows that a baby was born to a teen mother in Texas every 23 minutes in 2020. Half of teens become sexually active by their junior year of high school. We must stand together and address the issues in a non-partisan, education-first approach. Our state is stronger when we raise self-sufficient adults equipped with abstinence-plus sexual health information,” said Molly Clayton, Executive Director of the Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. “We have heard loud and clear from the young people we serve that they desperately need accurate, non-judgmental information on healthy relationships and sex. They need access to quality, youth-friendly health care services. We have a collective responsibility to improve equitable access to these supports, and we can best do that as a combined entity.”
Clayton will become the Chief Strategy Officer of the new Healthy Futures of Texas.
This fall, Texas school districts are preparing to implement new health education standards that include information like healthy relationships, contraception, and prevention of STIs for all middle school students. Texas parents are now required to provide written consent for students to participate in sex education or instruction on abuse prevention. Healthy Futures will advocate for high-quality sex ed in schools during the upcoming legislative session.
To help support implementation of the new sexual health education standards in public schools, this fall Healthy Futures of Texas will host the first-ever “State of Texas’ Adolescent Sexual Health Panel.” This panel will outline the new organization’s education and healthcare priorities, key areas for collaboration with schools and educators, as well as dispel myths on sexual health education in public schools.
Partners & Supporters
“Without exception, all of our partners, donors, and board members are excited about the exponentially larger impact we can have together,” said Terry Greenberg, CEO of Ntarupt. “Those current and new partners understand that the merger presents an expansion opportunity – a way to help more young Texans across the full identity and racial spectrum at a system-based level because when we change the systems, we change the future.”
Greenberg will become Interim Chief Development Officer of the new Healthy Futures of Texas and assume a position on the new Board of Directors. Learn how you can partner or support at www.HF-TX.org or email us at [email protected].
– Healthy Futures of Texas, established in 2006, has worked to reduce unplanned and teen pregnancies through science-based education and advocacy efforts that empower young people, women, and families to make the best decisions for their futures.
– North Texas Alliance to Reduce Unintended Pregnancy in Teens (Ntarupt), established in 2014, is the sole organization in North Texas committed to bringing together community resources for both parents and teens with a focus on teen pregnancy prevention and sexual and reproductive health.
– Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, established in 2009, is a non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to reducing the rate of unintended teen pregnancy in Texas through research, advocacy, collaboration, and training.