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Title V Competitive Sexual Risk Avoidance Education: Fact Sheet

Published: May 18, 2020

Purpose

The purpose of the Title V Competitive Sexual Risk Avoidance Education (SRAE) Program is to competitively fund projects to implement education exclusively on sexual risk avoidance that teach youth to voluntarily refrain from sexual activity. The program is designed to teach youth personal responsibility, self-regulation, goal setting, healthy decision-making, a focus on the future, and the prevention of youth risk behaviors such as drug and alcohol use without normalizing teen sexual activity.

Services & Required Topics

Grantees use an evidence-informed approach and/or effective strategies to educate youth on the optimal health behavior of avoiding non-marital sexual activity and other risky behaviors. Title V Competitive SRAE projects are implemented using a Positive Youth Development (PYD) framework as part of risk avoidance strategies to help participants develop healthy life skills, increase individual protective factors that reduce risks, make healthy decisions, engage in healthy relationships, and set goals that lead to self-sufficiency and marriage before engaging in sexual activity. Linking program participants to services provided by local community partners that support the safety and well-being of youth is also a key component of the program.

  • Interventions and/or strategies selected must be “medically accurate and complete,” age-appropriate with regard to the developmental stage of the intended audience, and culturally appropriate, recognizing the experiences of youth from diverse communities, backgrounds, and experiences.
  • Education on sexual risk avoidance must ensure that the unambiguous and primary emphasis and context for each topic described below is a message to youth that normalizes the optimal health behavior of delaying sexual activity until marriage.

In accordance with the Title V SRAE legislation, interventions must address the following topics:

a) The holistic, individual, and societal benefits associated with personal responsibility, self-regulation, goal setting, healthy decision-making, and a focus on the future.

b) The advantage of refraining from non-marital sexual activity to improve the future prospects, and physical and emotional health of youth.

c) The increased likelihood of avoiding poverty when youth attain self-sufficiency and emotional maturity before engaging in sexual activity.

d) The foundational components of healthy relationships and their impact on the formation of healthy marriages and safe and stable families.

e) The effect of other youth risk behaviors, such as drug and alcohol usage, on increasing the risk for teen sex.

f) Strategies on how to resist and avoid, and receive help regarding, sexual coercion and dating violence, recognizing that—even with consent—teen sex remains a youth risk.

  • Contraception.  For programs that provide information on contraception, the information must be medically accurate and complete, and ensure students understand that contraception offers physical risk reduction, but not risk elimination, and the education cannot include demonstrations, simulations, or distribution of contraceptive devices.

HISTORY

The Title V Competitive SRAE Program is authorized and funded by Section 510 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. § 710), as amended by Section 50502 of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (Pub. L. No. 115-123) and extended by the CARES Act, 2020 (Pub. L. No. 116-136).

MEASURING EFFECTIVENESS

To ensure effective programming, FYSB encourages grantees to consider the following practices in implementing effective sexual risk avoidance programs:

  1. Provide data that demonstrate how the selected intervention and overall proposal systematically applies core curriculum components that have been found to be effective in positive youth behavior change, especially delaying initiation of sexual activity until marriage, returning to a lifestyle without sex, and/or refraining from non-marital sex.
  2. Teach the benefits associated with personal responsibility, self-regulation, goal setting, healthy decision-making, healthy relationships, avoiding poverty, resisting sexual coercion and dating violence, and other youth risk behaviors, such as drug and alcohol usage.
  3. Provide formal training for facilitators/educators on the program strategies, approaches, and interventions. Selection of curricula from the HHS Teen Pregnancy Prevention evidence review list is not required.
  4. Link program participants to services with local community partners and other agencies that support the health, safety, and well-being of program participants.  The partnering agencies should share a commitment for optimal health outcomes, which do not normalize teen sex and emphasize sexual delay until marriage as normative behavior.

The Title V SRAE legislation requires research and evaluation efforts. To support such efforts, FYSB will provide grantees with technical support to participate in a range of evaluation and data collection projects, to include the following:

  • National Descriptive Study of Program Implementation
  • Program Components Impact Study, to identify effective Title V SRAE program components
  • Data and Evaluation Support to support grantee data capacity building and local evaluation support

GRANT AWARD PROCESS

In FY 2019, organizations and entities in states and territories that had not applied for Title V State Sexual Risk Avoidance education grants became eligible to submit competitive applications for funding. These states and territories were Alaska, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Guam, Marshall Islands, Northern Mariana Islands, and Palau. In FY 2019, a total of $ 1.9 million was awarded to 7 grantees.

 

Contact Us

Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Program
Training and Technical Assistance Center
Email: appta@rti.org
APP Website: https://teenpregnancy.acf.hhs.gov/
FYSB Website: www.acf.hhs.gov/fysb

Last Reviewed: June 3, 2020

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