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Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma: SMART Program

Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma: SMART Program

In July 2015, the HHS Office of Adolescent Health (OAH) awarded 84 Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP) Program grants. The Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma’s Set Morals and Resist Temptations (SMART) program is replicating evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention education for youth ages 11-19 who reside in high-need rural counties in Southeast Oklahoma.

  • In 2015, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma was awarded a grant from the HHS Office of Adolescent Heath (OAH) Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP) Program to implement a coordinated, community-based teen pregnancy prevention program.
  • Choctaw Nation partners with school districts to implement age appropriate evidence-based programs in middle schools, high schools, and alternative high schools.
  • A Youth Leadership Council and Community Advisory Group ensure that youth and adults in the community are actively engaged in the Choctaw Nation’s Set Morals and Resist Temptations (SMART).

About the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma’s Set Morals and Resist Temptation Program

Located in the Southeast corner of the state, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma covers 10 and a half counties, which have some of the highest teen birth rates in Oklahoma. Beginning in 2015, funding from OAH’s TPP Program enabled Choctaw Nation to expand their efforts and focus on preventing teen pregnancies.

The Choctaw Nation’s SMART Program is now able to deliver evidence-based curricula in four counties. They are implementing Safer Choices in middle schools, Draw the Line/Respect the Line in high schools, and All 4 You! in alternative schools (reaching mostly 11th and 12th graders). Two Community Advisory Councils engage a wide variety of community stakeholders—from school and health department officials to community action agencies—and a Youth Leadership Council gives youth a voice in the project.

“The Draw the Line program taught me how to set limits for myself.”

— High school student

“Wow!! Protect yourself!! STI’s is nothing you want!!”

— 8th grader

The goal of the project is to:

  • Reduce the teen birth rate by 10 percent in Choctaw, McCurtain, and Pushmataha counties;
  • Increase awareness about teen pregnancy prevention in communities; and
  • Promote adolescent health.

Why it Matters

OAH’s funding for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma’s SMART program is an investment in reducing the rates of teen pregnancy. The program:

  • Addresses Disparities in the Teen Birth Rate. Although the overall teen birth rate in Oklahoma has declined 52 percent from 1991 to 2015, Oklahoma still has the second highest teen birth rate in the nation. Native American teens and older teens have even higher birth rates than average. The Choctaw Nation’s SMART program focuses on communities with the greatest need in order to reduce disparities and have the greatest impact.
  • Serves a Community Need. Without the OAH TPP Program grant, there would be no funding for a teen pregnancy prevention program in these communities where the teen birth rates are nearly double that of the state and triple that of the nation. Choctaw Nation’s SMART program implements evidence-based programming in safe and supportive environments and in trauma-informed ways to address this need.

Choctaw Nation by the Numbers

  • National Teen Birth Rate (2015): 22.3 per 1,000 females ages 15-19;
  • Oklahoma Teen Birth Rate (2015): 34.8 per 1,000 females ages 15-19;
  • Teen Birth Rate for targeted counties (2014*): 61 (Choctaw); 77 (McCurtain); 78 (Pushmataha) per 1,000 females ages 15-19.

*reflects the most recent year for which data are available.

For more information or to schedule a site visit, contact:

Christi Hammons, Program Director
David Trusty, Sr. Educator/Assistant
P.O. Box 88, Hugo, OK 74743

About the Office of Adolescent Health TPP Program

The OAH Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program is a national, evidence-based program that funds diverse organizations working to prevent teen pregnancy across the United States. OAH invests in the implementation of programs identified as evidence-based by the HHS Teen Pregnancy Prevention Evidence Review, and provides funding to develop and evaluate new and innovative approaches to prevent teen pregnancy.

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Content created by Office of Adolescent Health
Content last reviewed on November 10, 2017