Teen-Aid, Inc. was founded in 1981 by a group of concerned parents and professionals in eastern Washington. Teen-Aid was created to address the crisis affecting teens nationally. With epidemic numbers of pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases among teens, and with the threat of AIDS, the founders believed that another approach to sex education was needed. The answer to these complex issues was more than contraceptive information and availability.
Teen-Aid has developed sex education materials that seek to place human sexuality in the context of commitment, responsibility and family. We challenge the common assumption that all teens are sexually active. Teens can wait to have sex when they are trained in the necessary skills to do so.
Freedom to Become …
Teen-Aid curricula present more than a “just say no” message. The materials clearly convey the advantages of a teen lifestyle free from sexual involvement. Abstinence brings freedom from adverse consequences, but is equally a freedom to become. This concept of freedom, even for those who have been sexually involved, is a very attractive concept.
More than Mechanics
Teens really want to know more than the mechanics of sex. Teen-Aid programs help students explore what really makes friendships and relationships work.
Building Life Skills
The program materials present mini-courses in communication, assertiveness, handling peer pressure, decision-making, good health, and others.
Talking Things Over: Why using Parent – Teen Communication Tools is Effective
Parents and teens alike express the desire for better communication. The curricula facilitate such dialogue through Parent Grams and Parent/Teen Communicators (see curricula below). Students take home handouts, which cover that day’s lesson and suggest topics for discussion (e.g. dating standards). Parents are given material to help them discuss their own family values.
Prior to 1982 there were NO parent participation tools in sex education programs. Teen-Aid invented them. Every program that Teen-Aid produces and carries in its catalogue contains a parent component.
Granted Family Planning Perspectives refused to print research about Teen-Aid studies, but they finally got the concept.