Freedom 180, the Sexual Risk Avoidance Program at the Florida Department of Health in Bay County, was established in 2001. It is currently funded by a federal grant administered by the Florida Department of Health, Division of Community Health Promotion. Freedom 180’s goal is to reduce teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases (STD) in youth by promoting healthy lifestyle choices. The program encourages positive youth development through STD and pregnancy prevention, goal setting, healthy relationships and abstinence from sex, drugs, and alcohol.
Freedom 180 educators mentor and educate Bay County youth in schools, high-risk juvenile facilities, drug and rehabilitation programs, after-school care, churches, and youth organizations. Middle school youth can build strong leadership skills by attending school-based Freedom 180: Connect groups. The program utilizes youth and adult volunteers, as well as community partner resources, to provide mentoring for at-risk students and host healthy lifestyle promoting activities and events. Parent participation is encouraged and educational sessions on topics relevant to parents are provided.For more information on the Freedom 180, Sexual Risk Avoidance program, call (850) 252-3697.