Teens Complete First of its Kind Peer-to-Peer Health Education Program in Chatham County
Sponsored by the Chatham Hospital Hispanic Health Initiative and funded by the N.C. Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities
For Immediate Release: Monday, June 12, 2006
SILER CITY, N.C. — Chatham Hospital today announced that 13 local teens have completed a unique, peer-to-peer health education training program that is the first of its kind in Chatham County.
Called Youth to Youth/Joven a Joven, the program teaches teens to speak to their peers and serve as positive role models on a broad range of health, social and sexual issues. Participants completed 30 hours of training on topics that include: self esteem, positive communication, body image and eating disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, mental health, reproductive health and family planning.
Each teen has committed to share what they’ve learned with at least 30 friends, acquaintances and family members. As a result, the 13 young women completing the course are expected to reach nearly 400 of their peers.
“The ripple effect from Youth to Youth/Joven a Joven is incalculable,” said Emily Adams, education director, Planned Parenthood of Central North Carolina. “There are so many issues facing young people today – from how to maintain a positive self-image and build health relationships to abstinence and contraceptive options. By educating teens to provide accurate information and referrals to other young people, we hope to help them build the skills they need grow into happy and healthy adults.”
According to Georgina Uresti, one of the young women participating in the program, it addresses what she described as a “huge need.”
“I’ve seen lots of teen pregnancies,” Gina said. “So I wanted to be able to tell my friends and sisters and cousins that there are other options. Youth to Youth/Joven a Joven has given us an in-depth understanding, helped us form our own opinions, and has given us the skills we need to discuss important issues with others.”
Youth to Youth/Joven a Joven is sponsored by the Chatham Hospital Hispanic Health Initiative with funding from the N.C. Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities. The program was developed by Planned Parenthood of Central North Carolina, which has successfully fielded classes in Durham, Orange and Cumberland Counties.
The 13 Siler City teens completing the program include: Ana Delia Morales Avilez; Yesenia Morales Avilez; Brenda Calderon; Rafaela Cruz Soto; Virginia Estefes; Rosalina Ochoa; Magdalena Ochoa; Guadalupe Rincón Limias; Ana Cecilia Salinas; Guadalupe Salinas; Maria Teutle; Jocelyn Teutle; and Georgina Uresti.