Manatee County, FL— May is National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month and the Healthy Teens Coalition of Manatee (HTC), in partnership with the Manatee County Youth Commission, will receive local government proclamation presentations recognizing the importance of this initiative, locally, as per the following schedule of meetings:
· Monday, May 5th at 6:45 PM, Palmetto City Council 516 8th Ave. W., Palmetto
· Tuesday, May 6th at 8:45 AM, Manatee County Commissioners, Manatee County Government Building, 1112 Manatee W., Bradenton
· Tuesday, May 13th at 5:40 PM, School Board of Manatee County, School Board Building, 215 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton
· Wednesday, May 28th at 5:45 PM, Bradenton City Council, 101 Old Main St. W., Bradenton
In addition, on May 20 at 3:00 PM, the Healthy Teens Coalition will host the second annual Manatee County Teen Pregnancy Prevention Recognition and Awards Reception to honor those who have made significant contributions to reducing teen pregnancy rates and improving the health and welfare of local youth. This event will be held at the Renaissance on 9th, 1816 9th St. W., in Bradenton.
Observed each May by states and communities throughout the country, National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month seeks to involve communities in promoting and supporting effective teen pregnancy prevention initiatives.
While Manatee County has seen a decrease in teen birth rates over the last three years, the county’s rate remains higher than the state average. In 2012, Manatee County was the seventh highest in the state for repeat births to mothers aged 15-17 and the average birth rate to students 12 to19 years old is 365 per year. However, 67.3% of all teen births are to 18-19 year old mothers.
Although Manatee County has historically experienced high teen pregnancy rates, live births to teen mothers have dropped by 38.79% when comparing 2011-2013 with 2003-2010. This encouraging decrease in teen birth rates has been demonstrated after the community’s strong focus on intensive programming to reduce teen pregnancies, which began in early 2011 via broad non-profit, school, and county partnerships.
The Healthy Teens Coalition of Manatee is dedicated to promoting healthy, responsible behaviors in Manatee County youth through partnerships with the community. The HTC engages young people, parents, community leaders, and policy-makers and aims to ensure that Manatee youth have access to the tools, education, and information that will equip them to make healthy, informed decisions, leading to a positive future.