OKC-County Health Receives Teen Pregnancy Prevention Grant
OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLA. – The Oklahoma City-County Health along with the Kirkpatrick Family Fund and the Central Oklahoma Teen Pregnancy Prevention Collaboration are receiving a Federal Health and Human Services grant of $1.2 million over five years.
Liz Eickman, Director of the Kirkpatrick Family Fund and Co-Chair of the Teen Pregnancy Prevention work group notes, “This grant validates the work performed by many organizations and individuals to reduce teen pregnancy and will allow us to expand our efforts to deliver age appropriate, evidence based and medically accurate programs to 10 new zip codes with the highest rates of teen births.”
“When implementation begins, we expect to reach approximately 4,700 youth ages 12-19 per year,” says Gary Cox, J.D., Executive Director of the OKC-County Health Department.
“This funding will propel us towards accomplishing our goal to reduce teen births in Oklahoma County by one-third by 2020,” Cox says.
Teen childbearing in Oklahoma cost taxpayers at least $169 million dollars in 2010 and with one out of five teen births in the state, Oklahoma County’s cost is estimated at nearly $40 million. The health risks and possible complications of teen pregnancy are vast.
In some Oklahoma City zip codes, teen birth rates are 2 to 3 times higher than the National Average.
In the recently released “As A Matter of Fact” plan to reduce teen pregnancy, we outlined several goals:
Goal 1. Ensure that every student in targeted school districts receives age-appropriate, high quality, evidence-based sex education curriculum in school. Information on abstinence and contraceptive use will be provided.
Goal 2. Engage youth, parents, families, faith communities and youth serving non-profits in all phases of planning and implementation of pregnancy prevention efforts. Utilizing parent supports and contacts such as PTA, booster clubs and other community groups. Provide peer educators.
Goal 3. Develop and market a coordinated system for ensuring access to teen friendly family planning services and contraception for sexually active youth in Oklahoma County.
We will have a common agenda, share our measurement systems, reinforcing activities and engage in continuous communication for a collective impact on Teen Pregnancy.
The Central Oklahoma Teen Pregnancy Prevention work group would also like to congratulate the Tulsa Area Teen Pregnancy Prevention Campaign and the Choctaw Nation for being recipients of HHS Grants as well.
The Kirkpatrick Family Fund was founded by John and Eleanor Kirkpatrick in 1989 and is the largest affiliated fund at the Oklahoma City Community Foundation. The mission of the Fund is to invest in ideas and leadership that contribute to and advance the cultural, intellectual, and social interests of the communities it supports. The organization remains committed to adhering to the priorities and guiding principles of its founders through the leadership of Trustee and President, Christian K. Keesee, the grandson of John and Eleanor Kirkpatrick.