Teen Pregnancy Prevention Fund
The Teen Pregnancy Prevention Fund provides financial support for current initiatives that address teen pregnancy prevention and unsafe sexual practices of teens in Washington County, MD.
Grant applications for the 2021 Teen Pregnancy Prevention Fund were recently being accepted until August 10th.
Grants will re-open this summer and are typically directed to programs and education specifically targeting a decrease in teen pregnancy and unsafe sexual practices in teens. Preference may be given to organizations or programs that offer education and programming to parents of pre-teens and teens.
Suggested grant amount is about $600. However, requests for other amounts will not be disqualified. Applicant organizations must be based in and primarily serving Washington County, Maryland, and have a current 501(c)(3) determination from the IRS. Organizations may apply for funding for more than one program; however, each program requires a separate grant application.
Why care about teen pregnancy?:
Washington County’s vital statistics demonstrate that our county has consistently ranked as having the 3rd or 4th highest teen birth rate in Maryland for many years. While the National and State and Washington County teen birth rates have shown dramatic improvement there is still much to be done to impact this issue.
“Compared to women who delay childbearing, teen mothers are less likely to complete high school and more likely to end up on welfare. The children of teen mothers are at significantly increased risk of low birth weight and pre-maturity, mental retardation, poverty, growing up without a father, welfare dependency, poor school performance, insufficient health care, inadequate parenting, and abuse and neglect.”
“Parents have a very important influence on whether their teenagers become pregnant or cause a pregnancy. Parents need to know that when it comes to young people’s decisions about sex, their influence has not been lost to peers and popular culture. They are powerful and they can use this power in sound, helpful ways.” Organizations or programs that offer educational seminars, workshops and printed materials that provide parents practical information about what they can do to help their children delay sexual activity and avoid teen pregnancy are needed in Washington County.
Boys and Girls Club of Washington County
San Mar Family and Community Services, Inc.
Boys and Girls Club of Washington County received their grant to support SMART Girls, a health, fitness, prevention/education and self-esteem enhancement program for girls ages 8-18 that encourages healthy attitudes and lifestyles. Activities include field trips, workshops, speakers, and other events.
“We wouldn’t be able to do what we do without the support of the community,” said Boys & Girls Club of Washington County Development Director E.J. Fuller. “I can not remember or think of one girl getting pregnant during my seven years with the organization, so there’s something that we’re doing right, and the [SMART Girls] program helps,” he continued.
San Mar Family and Community Services, Inc. will use their grant for their evidence-based San Mar Treatment Foster Care Parenting Prevention program. This program hopes to continue developing a mother and baby program in which youth in foster care learn and develop the necessary skills to effectively parent their children while receiving education on future pregnancy prevention, healthy relationships, safe sex practices, financial literacy, vocational and career goals, self-esteem, and character development.
“We are anticipating babies in our [foster care] program within the next six months, and so it was really important for us that we establish a curriculum to support them and we hope for that prevention afterwards, so that… the goal is that this doesn’t reoccur. They’ll get the support they need to make good choices, be education-focused and prevent future pregnancies,” said Mercede Robinson, LCSW-C, San Mar’s Director Treatment Foster Care.