FRC takes aim at teen pregnancy with new campaign

| 03/05/2014

(CNS) Updated: The Family Resource Centre launched a campaign Friday as part of Child Month, targeting teen pregnancy and awareness prevention. According to officials, the message “I’m worth the wait” is focused on encouraging young people to wait to have sex. They want teenagers to think about the decisions they are making and the bigger picture because young people don’t always engage in the critical thinking necessary to make decisions that are life-altering. FRC Programme Coordinator Miriam Foster, said that while abstinence is the only 100% method to avoid pregnancy and STDs, the campaign would include wider sex education and contraception because anabstinence-only message in isolation is ineffective.

“This initiative aims to provide tools for schools and homes to build individuals that understand they are worth the wait,” FRC officials said in a release about the campaign.

The message behind the campaign is that teens are smart and capable of making great choices and to tell teens that they can exercise self-control over their bodies and that they are special and valuable for lots of reasons. As a part of the campaign, FRC will distribute a winning poster created by a 16-year-old that illustrates the consequences sex may have and how your life may be impacted.

FRC officials will make be making presentations following invitations from John Gray High School and Cayman International School to get students to think critically about their future.

“Students will also be encouraged to sign take commitment cards that acknowledges their self-worth and that the decisions they make surrounding sex can be life-changing and wear a glow-in-the-dark bracelet that says I am worth the wait. The posters and bracelets will also be distributed at Batabano parades in partnership with Department of Children and Family Services,” a spokesperson for the FRC said.

“The mission of this campaign is to promote values, behaviour and policies that reduce both teen pregnancy and unplanned pregnancy among young adults. By increasing the proportion of children born into welcoming, intact families who are prepared to take on the demanding task of raising the next generation; our efforts will improve the well-being of children and strengthen the nation,” she added.

Teen pregnancy is a major issue across the region and CARICOM has revealed its plans to tackle it because of its impact on development. While childbirth rates are falling in general across the region in line with economic and social development, the rate in teenage girls is escalating.

"We cannot talk about sustainable development without addressing, in a serious way, the needs of young people, who make up over 60 per cent of the population of Caricom. Teenage pregnancy is one of the major challenges standing in the way of girls' education and their ability to achieve their full potential, especially when the necessary support systems are not in place," said Director of the UNFPA Sub-regional Office for the Caribbean Sheila Roseau at a recent population meeting in the region.

Most experts in the field and the vast majority of research on the subject points to better sex education, including the use of contraception, as a much more successful way of reducing unwanted pregnancies among young people than abstinence alone.

While abstinence my be the only sure fire way of preventing teen pregnancies, time and time again research demonstrates that teenagers who receive some type of comprehensive sex education are around 60 percent less likely to get pregnant or get someone else pregnant than those exposed to abstinence only, which had been shown to have no impact at all on reducing rates.

Many experts also warn that asking teens just to say no can increase the rates and risk of pregnancy as it deters contraceptive use.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    You know what besides all the criticizing and no hope attitudes, I LOVE the FRC for actually getting involved with young teenagers trying to assist them in any way they can and i feel they are doing a great job and they have my support! Keep up the good work! Keep working towards our youths and assisting the poor. I will give you the credit you need because when you need help they are willing to assist! Love it! Teach about abstinence and birth control. They are some young women who are not ready for sex and are only pressured by peers but if they get the counselling and confidence they need they will believe in their selves. If you have nothing good to say don't say nothing at all!

  2. Anonymous says:

    The Gangs come by the public schools and look for girls- and they are family to some of the ppeople in veryhighplaces. So nothing gets done about it…….Teachers don't care etc…


    Start with the schools and keep the gangs out?

    It is a never ending chain of events and reactions in Cayman Schools……

    • Anonymous says:

      Gangs supply the chemicals that the wrong boys use to "help girls relax".  Gangster/pothead wardrobe should be banned from all schools, and the flunking enablers expelled – for starters.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Once again the powers that be have their head in the sand. Abstenance is a waste of time. We have a very very serious problem here in the Cayman Islands of  children having children. Birth control and safe sex is the only way to go. We can preach till the cows come home to our youth to abstain but it just does not work as an effective method of birth control.

    • MEM says:

      Exactly my thoughts, there is too much sexual influence in the world that teens are exposed to, songs, movies, even blinking Disney cartoons! It is impossible to have the youth not have sex, parents with daughters must put the girls on birth control if they truly do not want them to get pregnant, because they will be having sex no matter how much abstinence we preach about!

      • Unison says:

        smh … no faith … to God all things are possible

        • Anonymous says:

          so he just can't be bothered to do anything? so keep on praising him an he might get around to it. Personally I always found action is favoured by God, not promises murmured under your breathe that forgotten as soon as you leave the church carpark.

    • Castor says:

      The very first paragraph states abstenence AND birth control. once again the powers that be have their head in the sand."? You didn't read the article.

    • Anonymous says:

      OMG they just realized this was going on?  Abstenance??? Get real.  Teach them safe sex at least they won't come home with any life threatening disease, birth control maybe they won't get pregnant…sorry absteance is not happening in this life time..  I am not even sure Sex Education is even taught in the schools….which should be taught by the 5th grade. 

  4. Anonymous says:

    This is well-meaning stuff, but real parenting doesnt rely on the FRC (or the local high school) to educate sons and daughters on life choices, birth control, body image, peer pressure, alcohol, drugs etc.  Our kids are going to try things from the unapproved list.  Many will try things to exercise their adolescent independence (like we did, and our parents before us) and specifically because you'd rather they didn't.  No fireside chat is going to quell the inevitable rebellion or reprogram the common humanity of adolescent behavior, so you might as well come to grips with that reality and pay them their due respect by educating them on the consequences and equip them with the requisite knowledge and counter measures.  Mentoring is the primary responsibility of a parent not FRC or any other employee of the state, as nice as the effort is.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yup, I agree that good parenting a key part of the solution to unwanted teen pregnancies.


      Unfortunately, there are many irresponsible parents out there. For those families, the state must step in with age appropriate sex education.


      If the state does not step in the the state will bear the cost of more and more unwanted babies who grow up:

      – with special needs both physical and mental

      – behaviour problems which increase the cost of schooling

      – no life skills and therefore will be a burden on social services

      – no life skills and therefore attracted to criminal activity to support themselves

      • Anonymous says:

        Abstinence is not a new concept, and we know it does not work.  It is certainly not sex education.  The pledge is merely kept untilit is broken, and then the guilt of breaking that promise propels the child into the waiting arms of the impregnator.

    • Anonymous says:

      What would also help is if parents would be held accountable for their kids actions from a young age onwards. If kids skip schools are seeing out and about after 10:00 p.m. at night, if they break or steal someone elses property, if they are disrespectful to their teachers and coaches etc. All of those are actions that should attract serious consquences for the child AND the parent. Perhaps this would spark some of the parents into proper supervision of their children and more of a desire for the parents to know what their children are actually up to.

      This is done in other countries – why can't this be the case in Cayman. Oh yeah, I forgot! In Cayman we don't want to step on anyones toes – we rather coddle everyone to death! 

  5. Happy Harry H. says:

    Abstinence makes the heart grow fonder.

  6. Unison says:

    Just like you wouldn't want to go into business with a partner who has a shady character, you wouldn't teach your child to marry just anyone on whim or infatuation. Hence you would never tell son or daughter to have sex without knowing and building a relationship with the person. If you are a caring parent you will never put your child at risk. You wil teach them to be observant:  Do he respect his mother?  Do she respect her father?  How does he or she treat her friends?  Does she/him react often and what causes her/him to react?  What is his/her background?  What is his/her objectives?  If he/she is a foreignor are they here to just marry someone to use them?  Does he/she believe in a surrendered life for God?  Most people who don't believe in an absolute God don't believe in absolute morals – and so anything goes.  Does the guy/woman attend church to worship God?  Is he/her an upright citizen?  All of these questions parent should teach their children to ask when finding a soul mate for life. Sex should never be encourage with contraceptions; I am one who believe in teaching your children abstenence. Because usually once those intimate feelings are awakened, you make it harder for your son or daughter to resist them even when the relationship becomes a dangerous relationship. It is better to teach them to detect a persons character, show dispassion as to whether a person should be a friend or companion. As a parent if you tell them its ok to have sex but use protection, you've placed your son/daughter on a weak footing when it comes to resisting. It is better to teach them that there is a time for everything; there is a time to abstain from sex. That is why in my humble opinion I believe the Church has always been right:  first get your education sorted out, detect and maintain a relationship with a person of good character, no sex until marriage, and no home before having children. Very straight forward and good for society.     

    • Right ya so says:

      Really Unison!? I'm insulted by your comments – I'm an agnostic and believe me I have very strong morals! Believe me, just because you believe in God doesn't mean you have morals. Shame on you.

      • Observer. says:

        Is it "strong" or "absolute"?  I think he meant absolute morality. In other words, how can you be an agnostic if you are claiming you have strong absolute morals?  What is the basis for having the strong absolute morals?  Why would you be an agnostic (not believing in a God) and say it is absolutely wrong to kill a human being… hence it is abortion is wrong no matter what?!  I think what Unison is saying is that it boils down to a belief in an absolute God what does not and will not change.

        • Anonymous says:

          Intrinsic morals exist and these are absolute, a story book written thousands of years ago is not needed for absolute morals to exist. Many forget that this is the same book that encouraged slavery, the oppression of women, child brides etc. Stop with the holier-than-thou attitude and realize that a child before having knowledge of the content within the bible can determine within themselves that what they are doing is wrong, absolute morals.


          • Unison says:

            Dear Anonymous (forget about the "story book" you apparently don't understand it) I leave you with this:  Did you ever ask yourself the question where did these intrinsic morals that you have come from???  So we are on the same page in terms of definition, "absolute" means "independent of and unrelated to anything else." Relative is the opposite of Absolute. Relative means related to something impermanent and hence subject to change. There is a big difference. Study the word what absolute and relative means in philosophy and religion before making comments… If you are a person who believes in "absolute morality" as fit the definition above, it would be irrational of you to say that there isn't an absolute source to the morality because why would you say then it is never subject to change???  Common sense would tell you that this "source" must also be personal since it interferes and tells us how we ought to behave. For instance it is absolutelyimmoral to murder an innocent child. If you do, I promise you, you will be haunted by your deed for the rest of your life. This "haunting" of the good you failed to do and in taking an innocent life is from an absolute moral code that was impressed on your mind. Was it learnt?  Of course not!  Why does it torment you?  Is the "haunting" from an interloper way beyond human influences?  Yes.  Don't be foolish to justify persisting in living an immoral life to do whatever you want!  It is a trick of the devil – do what you want, all morality is relative, and there is no God to answer to but yourself!  Beware of atheism!  It sounds grand and all natural but when you look into the bug, it takes as much blind faith to be an atheist and say there is no God. Where is your evidence that there is no God???  You have none!  How can the creature with only eyes, ears, one head come to the conclusion that they know more than the "source" of his/her being?  But you justify yourself to switch your morality any way you want. You say your morality is absolute but holding on to a “no God concept” I guarantee that whenever circumstances change and the morality is not conducive to your life, you will change it and justify it. Don't come to me and say you hold on to absolute morals yet deny an absolute God! That's not rational.

    • Anonymous says:

      "…Most people who don't believe in an absolute God don't believe in absolute morals…"


      Sorry, but that statement is not true. It is church propaganda.

    • MEM says:

      All my mother talked about was abstinence, even after my first daughter came when I was 17 years old she still didn't even want me and the child's father sitting next to eachother in a couch (talk about denial!) – it was a constant pounding in my head about wait until marraige and yadda yadda, yadda – and she ALWAYS discouraged birth control (even until now). But now that my daughter is a young lady, the reality of it is that our kids are very exposed to sex and the strong influence it has will cause them to first become curious and then to expiriment; so the churches can say whatever they want to right now, youth must be equipped with the knowledge of birth control and STD prevention, because like it or not they will be having sex. And if as parents and adults we cannot be spoken to openly and honestly by these young people they will do it even more! They will hide sex from you because you are constantly speaking abstinence and when a teen hides things is when they are in real danger!

      • Unison says:

        God knows how we are tempted like our children every day in a culture of sex, pornography, and all that glitters. He understands are weaknesses and desires all to strive to reach His standards. He is ever merciful and full of grace to give us that power to honor His name and to live a true authentic human life; or else He wouldnt be God. The high moral standards we set on our children, they in turn will set on their children, and it will continue from generation to generation. Our children make up society and if society is too weak to control its passions, it will disintegrate. It starts with no moral fortitude in the home, broken marriages, child neglect, etc… A broken home results in a broken community. The children are misguided and lost – where are the parents? Then from the broken communities the whole of society is affected. God gives us the grace to take the stand and live up to the high ideal. So there is no excuse to not try to at least live up to abstemiousness and self-control, which plants a true foundation for our children and generations to come, because they are more focal to attaining important life-goals.

        • Anonymous says:

          The little angel will be steadfast in her pledge until the inevitable squabble with her parents (where she is treated like she is still 5) and the welcome comfort and understanding from the trusted boyfriend, who will give her something to "help her relax"…

  7. Anonymous says:

    Raggamuffin don't be silly, put a rubba pon ya willy!

  8. H. Orny says:

    Yeah right. That'll stop the youthful hormones from raging. Just like it has from the days of Adam and Eve. Speaking of Adam & Eve, I hope Customs doesn't hold up my "new toy" order.