When Gaston Youth Connected launched in 2010, we had one big target: to reduce the teen pregnancy rate by 10% in 5 years. We are proud to announce that in half that time – between 2010 and 2012 – Gaston County’s teen pregnancy rate dropped 28%! Moreover, the historical gap between white and African American teen pregnancies closed, drawing national attention to Gaston County’s success.
These tremendous victories are a reflection of the hard, thoughtful work and Gaston County’s shared commitment to the health, safety, and future of its young people.
Here are a few highlights of our success at the half-way mark:
- More than 1,300 youth participated in GYC-sponsored programs. On abstinence, they went from C-students to A-students. On birth control knowledge, they went from F-students to B-students.
- More than 150 community groups, businesses, and leadership organizations hosted programs or presentations, promoted prevention efforts, or directly served youth and families.
- The Gaston County Health Department opened its Teen Wellness Center, a nationally recognized adolescent-friendly health center. Nearly 20% of the TWC’s contraceptive-seeking teen clients receive one of the most effective birth control methods – compared to only 5% statewide.
- Say so long to 16 & Pregnant… Just 77 of Gaston County’s teen pregnancies in 2012 occured to a minor under the age of 18.
- Gaston County is on-pace to beat the state’s teen pregnancy rate in under two years.