Children's Aid Society–Carrera Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Program helps young people avoid becoming teenage parents by setting them on the path to successful adulthood. Its afterschool model has been shown to reduce teen pregnancies by 50 percent.
Founded in 1984, the Children’s Aid Society’s Carrera Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Program (CAS-Carrera) uses a holistic, “above the waist” approach to ensure young people develop ambitious personal goals, improve their sexual literacy, and cultivate aspirations for a productive future. Guided by a philosophy that sees youth as "at promise" not "at risk," CAS-Carrera begins working with boys and girls at age 10 or 11 and follows them through high school graduation and college admission.
The program is built on seven integrated, scientifically accurate, and age-appropriate components: daily education; weekly job club, family life and sexuality education, and mental health sessions (and social work services, as needed); multiple exposures to lifetime individual sports and self-expression; and access to comprehensive medical and dental services provided by local partners. The program’s approach centers on understanding that we do not prevent teen pregnancy—young people do. They are able to achieve this when their future is filled with promise and exciting possibilities, leading them to reduce risks on their own.
A study by Philliber Research Associates published in 2017 found that students participating in the program in Tulsa, OK and New York City were less likely than non-participants or a matched comparison dataset to report having been pregnant or to have caused a pregnancy. The study also noted additional positive effects on students’ behavior.
EMCF awarded CAS–Carrera a total of $14.6 million from 2004 to 2016. In 2011, CAS-Carrera received a $3.5 million, three-year Social Innovation Fund award and became a True North Fund grantee. In 2014, EMCF followed that up with an 18-month, $517,000 investment.
EMCF’s investments helped the Carrera program grow from serving 900 youth in 2005 to 3,700 in 2015. They also supported the creation of a National Accreditation and Training Center to provide fidelity management and technical assistance to other entities implementing the program, the replication and evaluation of its in-school model in Tulsa, and a cost study.
In 2015, CAS-Carrera launched its Above the Waist curriculum, which infuses middle school sex education with new research in adolescent brain development, and began offering select components of its full model to schools in New York City.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Learn more about CAS–Carrera at stopteenpregnancy.childrensaidsociety.org.