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Sexual Health and Adolescent Risk Prevention (SHARP)

Implementation Setting: 
Correctional facility
Intervention Length: 
Fewer than 10 sessions
Age Group: 
Race / Ethnicity: 
Outcomes Affected: 
Contraceptive use and consistency
Study Rating: 

Program Summary

Sexual Health and Adolescent Risk Prevention (SHARP) is an interactive single-session STI/HIV prevention intervention. The program's overall goals are to deepen STI/HIV knowledge, improve correct condom use, reduce sexual risks and alcohol use, and set long-term goals to utilize knowledge and skills learned during the session. The session is about four hours long and organized by gender.

Read the full Implementation Report, which includes:

  • Program Overview
  • Program Components
  • Implementation Requirements and Guidance
  • Implementation Readiness Assessment

Advice from the Field

OAH has compiled lessons learned and advice related to implementation and cost implications of Sexual Health and Adolescent Risk Prevention (SHARP) from TPP grantees. The information below is intended to provide useful tips and overall feedback that organizations should consider when choosing and implementing SHARP.

Program Components

  • Review SHARP’s curriculum and video materials prior to purchasing them for implementation. This can help you decide if the program is well-suited for the target population and community.
  • Consider purchasing portable computers and/or laptops to make it easier for educators to implement SHARP.
  • Carefully plan your visit if you’re implementing SHARP in a juvenile justice facility. In these settings, you are required to go through metal detectors, which may be time consuming, especially when bringing in equipment.
  • Consider making changes to the length of program sessions, especially when implementing in specialized settings. SHARP is intended to be delivered in one four-hour session, which may be longer than visiting hours for some juvenile justice facilities. Keep in mind modifying the session length is considered a major adaptation and would require approval from the distributor/developer and OAH.
  • Minor adaptations, such as the items listed below, still need to be approved by OAH prior to program implementation:
    • Make SHARP more interactive for participants.
    • Update the curriculum content and videos to make them more age-appropriate and culturally relevant for participants.
  • Review and potentially modify the pre- and post-test provided by the developer; it was originally used for a research study and may be longer and more cumbersome than is necessary for programs that are not conducting a rigorous evaluation. If you do modify the evaluation tools, ensure that the data being collected supports your evaluation plan.
  • Consider using the revised version of the video, created by Youth Services of Tulsa, Inc. Their revised version has been updated and includes less explicit language.

Staffing and Professional Development

  • Provide trainings on motivational interviewing, reproductive health, sexually transmitted disease (STD) and infection (STI) prevention, substance abuse and alcohol prevention, and trauma-informed care for all staff implementing SHARP. This information is not covered in SHARP training but can enhance program quality.
  • Ensure staff feel comfortable delivering information about pregnancy and HIV prevention to youth. Consider hiring staff who have experience delivering this sort of information.

Stakeholder and Parent Buy-in

  • Emphasize that SHARP covers a variety of skills, including goal setting and refusal and negotiation skills, which can be applied to youth’s everyday lives. This can assuage concerns about SHARP’s condom demonstration activities that may be raised by community officials, partners, and members.


  • Allocate resources to purchase software licensing needed for SHARP’s video game component and ensure that it is compatible with your computers and/or laptops.
  • Consider purchasing a class set of computers. This removes concerns about relying on sites to provide the technology needed for youth to complete the computerized sessions.

Read the list of potential adaptations that were previously implemented by OAH grantees for SHARP.

Read the research on the SHARP program on ASPE's website.

Content created by the
Office of Adolescent Health
Content last reviewed on
Friday, December 11, 2015