It’s hard to believe that summer has flown by so fast. The leaves have turned, the days are cooler – I’m afraid fall really is here to stay. What a great season though. One of my favorites.
Last week Shelly Donahue was in Jackson. It was a great week. Shelly is the co-author of the WAIT (why am I tempted) curriculum and teaches this relationship education program to teens and young people. She is an amazing, energetic, passionate and very funny speaker. She tells it like it is. She recently changed the name of her program from WAIT to “Tall Truth”. Last week she spoke to parents, teens, and the students at Summit High School. The response was overwhelming. Yes, she does ask teens to wait until they are married before they have sex. The reason? So that they can have a great life and a great marriage. The suicide rate for boys who are sexually active at a young age is 8 x’s greater than that of boys who are not sexually active at a young age. That is astounding to me. Alcohol & drugs & sex just don’t mix well at this age and probably not at any age if the truth be known. Statistics show that teens who are sexually active at a young age do not do as well academically. When you add pregnancy, abortion and STD’s on top of that the rate of completing high school is much lower. The rate of divorce increases, poverty increases and the cycle repeats itself.
The goal of the WAIT or Tall Truth curriculum is to educate young people so that they can make better decisions before they are faced with addictions, pregnancy and all the other things that come along with it. We’d love nothing better than to go out of business because our teens are making really good decisions. We have great kids and grandchildren. Let’s get on board and give them the help and support they need.
Here are a few of the comments from our teens who heard Shelly speak:
I liked…. She talked to us like adults.
I liked…. How passionate she was and that someone actually talked about sex.
I liked ….that she talked about the differences in girls & boys.
I liked….how everything she said made sense.
I liked….that she gave it to us straight.
I liked….how she was really open about it – not like most educators.
And there is much more. But… what now? We need to keep the dream going. We would love to be able to have this program taught in the middle school, high school & community school. We have the opportunity to teach this program at Summit this winter. We would love to have the same opportunity at the middle school and other high schools in Jackson. In the meantime we’d like to start where we have connections. Currently that means after school programs. If you have connections you’d like us to know about give us a call at 733-5162.
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