Change can happen any number of ways. Sometimes it is grand and abrupt, even traumatic, as we saw in 2020. At other times, it is slow and steady. It can even sneak up on you! TPPP’s Board has been carefully considering the changes in the field of sexual health for several years now and took on the significant task of revising our organization’s mission, vision and values in 2020. The beginning of a new year always brings reflection and hope which makes it the perfect time to share these updates and celebrate the opportunities we have to adapt and change to better serve young people in Missouri.
What is new?
For those who were familiar with TPPP’s existing mission, vision and values, there are significant changes. Our existing mission, vision and values did not clearly reflect our commitment to equity, inclusion and a positive youth development approach. We hope these updates center these commitments for our organization and our members. In addition, the Board felt it was essential to push against the stigma and shame that is too often associated with adolescent sexual health and early parenting. Guilt and shame work against trust and open communication which are key to creating meaningful relationships that support teens.
What remains the same?
While we are excited to learn and grow in our work to promote adolescent sexual health, the core of TPPP’s mission has not changed. The Teen Pregnancy & Prevention Partnership unites communities across Missouri to promote adolescent sexual and reproductive health. We welcome diverse stakeholders who share in this mission to collaborate in order to ensure young people have the resources they need to make healthy decisions. We also believe in evidence-based and evidence-informed practices which is why TPPP promotes comprehensive, medically-accurate sexual health education.
Moving forward, we hope that these revisions, along with the foundation that has long held our partnership together, will get us closer to our vision where “adolescents in Missouri are supported and safe to make reproductive and sexual health decisions for themselves regardless of race, income, parenting status, geographic location, sexual orientation, gender identity, or ability status”.
You will find the updated mission, vision and values here and on our website at https://www.teenpregnancy-mo.org/about/mission-vision/
Please take a few minutes to review and share them with your friends and colleagues. If you know someone who is already committed to these same ideals or who might like to know more, invite them to join us for a professional development or as a member. Uniting communities to promote adolescent sexual and reproductive health is a mission, but it is also a challenge. A challenge that requires us all to be active and engaged in order to grow and welcome others into the work.