Sasha Bruce

Teen Outreach Program

The Sasha Bruce Youthwork Teen Outreach Program® (TOP)® is a positive youth development program that partners with middle schools and high schools in DC’s Ward 7 and 8 to strengthen teen’s educational success, life and leadership skills, and healthy behaviors and relationships. By leveraging the Wyman Teen Outreach Program® curriculum, the program helps reduce the incidence of teen pregnancy and risky sexual behavior, course failure, school suspension, and skipping school.

To achieve its goals, the TOP® program consists of three interrelated elements:

  • ADULT SUPPORT AND GUIDANCE: Each TOP® club is led by at least one consistent and trained facilitator over a 9-month cycle. Group facilitators are further supported by teachers, guidance personnel, or youth leaders who help foster a trusting environment.
  • CURRICULUM-BASED GROUP ACTIVITIES: TOP® groups meet at least once a week throughout the school year (9 months) to discuss a variety of topics, including communication skills/assertiveness, understanding and clarifying values, relationships, goal-setting, influences, decision-making, and adolescent health and sexual development.
  • COMMUNITY SERVICE-LEARNING: Teens engage in a minimum of 20 hours of community service learning per academic year. TOP® facilitators guide the youth in choosing, planning, implementing, reflecting on, and celebrating their service-learning project. Service projects may include direct service, indirect service, or civic actions.

The project described was supported by Grant Number 1 TP1AH000255-01-00 from the HHS Office of Population Affairs. Contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Department of Health and Human Services or the Office of Population Affairs.