CAI’s HOPE Buffalo Project
Cicatelli Associates, Inc. (CAI) 505 Eighth Avenue Suite 1900 New York, NY 10018-6506
Project Director Stan Martin, (212) 594-7741, SMartin@caiglobal.org
website:caiglobal.org; requesting $1,436,650.00
Building upon the strong foundation of our existing HOPE Buffalo community mobilization project, Cicatelli Associates, Inc. (CAI) will partner with youth leaders and an extensive network of partners to leverage the trusting relationships built with the community over the last seven years, that have contributed to a reduction in teen pregnancy rates by 34% from 2015-2020. As the Backbone organization of HOPE Buffalo, we will work alongside a group of committed partners and youth to organize and pursue coordinated action toward a common vision. To do that we will implement effective, medically accurate, age-appropriate, and culturally tailored evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention interventions and strategies to reduce teen pregnancy and other associated behavioral risk factors. Our coordinated approach will reach 3,000 youth, ages 10 to 19, annually as well as their parents, caregivers, and other caring adults in school, in the community, and in workforce development programs, to improve sexual and reproductive health outcomes, promote positive youth development, and advance health equity for adolescents, their families, and communities.
Located in Erie County, Buffalo is the second largest city in New York, with a population of 276,804 of which 12.4% are aged 10-19 years old (34,387 youth). Buffalo is broadly diverse, having a higher percentage of Black/African American (36.1%), Hispanic (11.5%), Asian (8.6%), and persons identifying as another race (9.6%) than Erie County as a whole. Buffalo residents experience high levels of poverty, with 26% living below 100% of the federal poverty level. In the 2021-2022 school year, 78% of the 28,508 students attending Buffalo Public Schools in grades K-12, were considered poor by the NYS Department of Education. The Buffalo Public Schools 2021 Youth Risk Behavior Survey results show that students report increased experience of sexual violence and a need for significantly enhanced social support and mental health services. Further, results show that suicide attempts are rising at both the middle and high school levels (from 10% to 12% and 8% to 11%, respectively).
The project’s goal is to advance equity in adolescent health (age 10-19) in five zip codes in Buffalo by leveraging relationships in the community that cultivate optimal sexual and mental health for adolescents through an equitable lens. To achieve our goal, we will mobilize our youth and community partners to develop a coordinated plan to advance adolescent health equity over the five-year project period by replicating and scaling up evidence-based program and strategies reaching 2,700 youth, ages 10-19, annually. In tandem with those efforts, we will build the capacity of 300 parents and other caring adults in the community to create safe, supportive environments for all youth, and strengthen and expand a school and community-based referral network to link 1,000 youth to sexual health services and behavioral and mental health providers each year of the project. CAI, as the Backbone of this vital initiative that has been proven effective in reducing teen pregnancy rates will maintain and update the systems to collect, report and use data to continuously improve performance.