Teen Pregnancy Prevention Meets the Family Court System
Last week I had the pleasure of attending The Family Court of the District of Columbia Superior Court 12th Annual Interdisciplinary Conference at the DC Convention Center. This year’s focus was on Preventing Teen Pregnancy: A Systems Collaboration. The event featured local and national level speakers, including our very own Sarah Brown—who provided an inspiring keynote; as well as local leaders sharing their successes implementing quality programs like the Teen Outreach Program and the New Heights Program. We were joined by leaders from the judicial community, education sector, social workers and attorneys from the child welfare sector, and even the District of Columbia Metropolitan Chief of Police, Cathy Lanier.
The conference shared both a positive and motivational vibe. We celebrated the successes and accomplishments of young people in the District, while discussing ways to collaborate in order to better meet their needs as they pass through the various systems they are involved with. The conference program illustrated the fact that current programs tend to focus heavily on secondary pregnancy prevention—with much talk of support for our pregnant and parenting teens in foster care. It is my hope that further elevating this issue with those in the child welfare field will ultimately lead to greater efforts on the primary prevention side of things. This event was a wonderful opportunity to network and learn from our colleagues working with youth in a variety of settings throughout the District and I was thrilled to be involved as a representative of the Campaign.
If you're interested in teen pregnancy prevention and high risk communities, the Campaign has a number of great resources. Check them out in our Child Welfare & Juvenile Justice section.