Engaging Young Men in Preventing Premature Fatherhood

State: North Carolina

Client(s): CDC - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Services: Health Care & Public Health Planning, Health Communication, Training & Technical Assistance

Technical Expertise: Adolescent Health, Family Planning & Reproductive Health, Maternal and Child Health, Safety Net

The Office of State, Tribal, Local, and Territorial Support, CDC chose JSI as one of 23 national organizations to help strengthen our nation’s capacity to deliver public health services by providing guidance, support, and technical assistance to state, tribal, local and territorial health departments and other agencies supporting public health on the front lines.

The CDC Division of Reproductive Health engaged JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc. (JSI) in a five-year grant (2013-2018) to assist in the Engaging Young Men in Clinical Services to Prevent Premature Fatherhood (EYM) project. The first four years of the grant focused on improving reproductive health services for young men, ages 15-19, in Gaston. JSI partnered with health center partners Gaston Family Health Services (GFHS) and Gaston County Department of Health and Human Services (GHHS) to reduce premature fatherhood by maximizing opportunities to provide reproductive health services to young males by improving access and linkages to reproductive health services in health care provider settings.

Strategies focused on maximizing opportunities to provide improved reproductive health services to men already accessing clinical services [already in the door], and increasing the number of men accessing these clinical services [getting them through the door], and in included the following activities:

1) an assessment of current practices to engage young in reproductive health services;
2) an assessment of challenges and barriers that young men experience in seeking these services; and
3) test tools and intervention strategies to better engage young men through reproductive health services in order to prevent premature fatherhood.

For the final project year 2017-2018, the partners focused on the design and piloting of a training and toolkit for youth-serving professionals that interact with young men, ages 15-24, in order to expand the reach of the pilot. These professionals could include teachers, school counselors, boys and girls club counselors, probation officers, child welfare administrators, social workers, or substance abuse counselors. The focus of the training and toolkit is on how to professionals to inform young men about the importance of reproductive health and refer young men to reproductive health services.