Connect To Protect®
Protecting the health of young people has always come naturally to those closest to them. Community leaders, local organizations and service providers, social and faith-based institutions, families and even youth themselves all have a wealth of knowledge and experience in caring for these age groups. Similarly, medical researchers and other health professionals have devoted many years of hard work and resources to identify the most promising ways to prevent adolescent and young adult illness and disease.
The researchers involved in C2P are from the Adolescent Medicine Trials Network (ATN) for HIV/AIDS Interventions, the only nationwide group devoted to looking at how youth and their communities are affected by this epidemic. Made up of 15 city sites throughout the United States and Puerto Rico, the ATN strives toward:
• Caring for children, teenagers, and young adults with HIV;
• Searching for ways to keep HIV from spreading among young people; and
• Making sure that adolescents and young adults are represented in research ranging from HIV prevention to treatment and care.
In each city, the C2P team will draw from federal, state and local resources to identify at-risk youth and at the same time create a profile of the community resources that are available to them. By comparing disease and risk rates with service availability, neighborhood strengths and neighborhood needs will be revealed, allowing researchers and community partners to zero in on the prevention strategies that are most needed to protect the health of their city’s youth.
The mission of the Connect to Protect (C2P) Bronx coalition is to reduce HIV/AIDS rates among young people of color through collaborative efforts to impact community programs, policies and social practices.
Together with our community partners, the C2P Bronx coalition works to design and engage in structural intervention activities to transform the Bronx’s physical and social environment in ways that can, for the long term, curb the spread of HIV among young people. C2P defines structural change as new or modified programs, practices of policies that are logically linkable to HIV transmission and acquisition and can be sustained over time; even when key actors are no longer involved.
The C2P Bronx coalition is comprised of subcommittees that focus on a range of different initiatives that impact the practices of providers and the well-being of adolescents:
• Healthy Relationships Subcommittee addresses issues related to social-emotional learning in the community and schools to reduce the incidence of teen dating violence.
• Youth Development Subcommittee is the only subcommittee that has youth members. These youth advocate for issues that directly affect them.
• School Subcommittee focuses on policies that affect LGBTQ youth including an annual training for youth service providers that work with LGBTQ youth.
• HIV Testing and Linkage to Care Subcommittee works on policy change related to linkage to care, engagement in care, and retention in care for HIV-positive youth; as well as strategies to improve HIV testing among high risk youth.
Contact Elizabeth Spurrell, LCSW, MPH at 718-882-0232, ext. 235 or espurrell@AdolescentAIDS.org to learn more about the C2P Bronx coalition.
Current C2P Bronx Partners:
Aspira of New York
Bronx Borough President’s Office
Cardinal McClosky Services
Casa Atabex Ache
Children’s Aid Society
Citizen’s Advice Bureau
Dominican Sisters Family Health Services
MIC Women's Health Services
Montefiore School Health Programs
Neighborhood Youth & Family Services New Settlement Apartments New York City Housing Authority – Butler-Webster Community Center
Planned Parenthood of NYC – Bronx
Teen Health Center at Union Community Health Center