Something Big

We’re proving that education is powerful enough to decrease wide scale rates of unplanned pregnancies, suicides, sexual assault, mental illness and more among youth by creating transgenerational empathy.

Together, we’re preparing kids to take on the world. Here’s how.

It’s not enough to focus on the after-the-fact when it comes to mental wellness, reproductive health or relationships. For the next ten years, we will monitor our impact across the following core impact areas.

1

Number of unplanned pregnancies averted.

2

Number of averted completed and attempted suicides.

3

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) prevented.

4

Number of students with intellectual or developmental disabilities educated on mental and reproductive health.

5

Averted instances of sexual assault.

6

Averted instances of alcohol and drug abuse.

7

Averted instances of bullying.

8

Number of teachers trained and equipped to handle students in crisis.

9

Number of young people directed toward appropriate and useful mental and developmental health resources.

10

Number of parents with increased access to mental and reproductive health education resources.

A Brief History Lesson

Ancient Times

Evil spirits are thought to be the cause of ‘unusual behaviors’ among people with mental illness. It is believed that the practice of trepanation--drilling a hole into the skull--will release these spirits.

460 BCE - 370 BCE

Hippocrates introduces the concept of mental illness using the idea that there are four humors needed to keep the body healthy. He believes that mental illness stems from an imbalance of these humors and that procedures such as bloodletting can be used to achieve balance once again.

Late 18th Century

People from a higher class invite physicians into their homes to treat family members with mental illness. However, little is known about how to properly treat mental illness and physicians often resort to bleeding and purging. If the family member is no longer wanted in the home, they may be sent to a private home.

Mid 19th Century

Mental asylums grow in popularity and those that treat patients well are meant to serve as an alternative option to prisons, people-zoos and hospitals. However, these facilities quickly become overcrowded due to a misunderstanding of mental illness and an over-diagnoses of patients.

Sex education is incredibly limited and predominately happens at home.

Early 1960s

Support for sex education in schools gains widespread support and the first birth control pill wins approval from the FDA.

1964

Physician and public health advocate Mary Calderone founds the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS).

1980's

Sex education becomes a heated political issue. Some people believe that age-appropriate, medically accurate information about sexual health will decrease risk-taking behaviors among young people while others believe that providing comprehensive information about sexual health will increase risk taking behaviors.  

(Fair. There was not a whole lot of research at this time to prove one side of the argument over the other.)

1990

SIECUS publishes a guide for teaching age-appropriate, comprehensive sexual health and development information called the Guidelines for Comprehensive Sexuality Education — Kindergarten-12th.

2007

Scientist Douglas Kirby conducts research comparing abstinence-only curricula to curricula that covers the use of condoms and other contraceptives in addition to discussing abstinence. His findings: abstinence-only curricula are not effective at raising the age of first-intercourse, reducing the number of teens' sexual partners or improving the use of condoms among sexually active teens. Comprehensive sexuality education courses are, however, successful. Several other studies concluded similar findings at this time.

Today

The overwhelming majority of U.S. parents (over 90%) believe it is important to have sex education taught in middle school and high school! But, available resources are often outdated, non-digital and even medically inaccurate at times!

Digital wellness solutions are on the rise and conversations about mental health are becoming common place. Some states now require mental health education at the K-8 level. We’re on the right track, but we still have a long way to go!