NAEA launches abstinence-only education campaign

WASHINGTON: The National Abstinence Education Association launched a $1 million campaign to educate parents and grandparents about establishing abstinence-only programs in schools.

WASHINGTON: The National Abstinence Education Association launched a $1 million campaign to educate parents and grandparents about establishing abstinence-only programs in schools.

Alexandria, VA-based CRC Public Relations is providing media relations for the ongoing Parents for Truth campaign, which launched May 29 and aims to enroll 1 million parents in the campaign within three years. NAEA is a Washington-based advocacy group that was created to support abstinence education.

E-mails went out to 30,000 supporters and other “friendly” organizations the same week the campaign Web site, www.parentsfortruth.org, launched, said Valerie Huber, executive director at NAEA.

Huber said the viral campaign is as much about public awareness as it is about encouraging parents to advocate at federal, state, and local levels for abstinence education. The topic remains controversial for many educators, lawmakers, and families.

Congress is debating the authorization of $190 million in federal funding for abstinence education programs, based on a number of reports stating these programs are ineffective, according to a story in The Washington Post.

The campaign aims to register 100,000 parents in the first year of the campaign, mainly though outreach from NAEA supporters, said Huber. Each participant pays a $30 membership fee to access resources, like how to write letters to the editor and ensure media coverage at local events, as well as the latest news about abstinence education. A three-minute educational video was also posted to the Web site and YouTube.

No campaign events have been scheduled, but Huber said there may is a possibility for future events as the campaign progresses.

NAEA hired CRC in April 2007 to develop and implement a national PR campaign that promotes abstinence education, according to a PRWeek story published last year. Huber said that NAEA and CRC had worked together on a number of campaigns since then. CRC deferred questions to NAEA.

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