What We Do
HiTops focuses its experience and expertise on addressing sexual risk behaviors and violence among youth. HiTops delivers education, training and support to reduce health risks, promote healthy relationships and build supportive, inclusive environments. HiTops values prevention as a cost effective strategy that also engages youth in their own healthcare.
HiTops teaches an age-appropriate, medically accurate sexual health education to reduce rates of HIV, STIs and unplanned pregnancies. Comprehensive sexuality education teaches risk avoidance through abstinence and provides risk reduction strategies to individuals who are sexually active to help them reduce their risks of infections or pregnancy.
Age Groups and Topics:
- Ages 10-14: Hygiene, Puberty
- Ages 13-18: Postponing Sexual Involvement, Pregnancy Prevention, HIV/AIDS, STIs
- Ages 15-18: Birth Control, Reproductive Health, Sexual Decision Making
These programs were developed to align with NJ Department of education’s Core Curriculum Content Standards for Health Education.
Primary prevention is the best practice for reducing rates of intimate partner violence, sexual assault and dating violence. HiTops educational programs promote respectful, non-violent relationships to both males and females starting as young as elementary school.
Date Rape/Sexual Assault • Healthy/Unhealthy Relationships • Dating Violence/Abuse • Safe Dates
HiTops teaches diversity, respect and inclusiveness in schools and other organizations to reduce incidences of self-harm, physical assault, harassment and bullying, with particular attention to LGBTQ+ youth. Teaching these messages to middle and high school students helps to foster pro-social attitudes and facilitate a sense of connectedness amongst youth.
Class Topics: Appreciating Differences • Bullying/Mean Behavior • Bridges of Respect • Cyberbullying • Gender Identity • LGBTQ • Sexual Harassment • Trans Issues
For youth to thrive in their schools and communities, they need to feel socially, emotionally and physically safe. HiTops knows that young people feel safer when there are policies and people in place that protect them. HiTops provides training, education and support to create supportive connections with peers and adults for young people to feel safe and thrive.
- In-service Trainings for Teachers on inclusivity, health education, engaging students on sensitive topics, and being a trusted adult.
- Peer Educators are high school seniors who undergo a one-year leadership and education training so that they are prepared to promote sexual health, healthy relationships, and inclusivity in their schools and communities. For students interested in establishing a more inclusive and welcoming school environment for LGBTQ+ youth—HiTops provides training.
- Ongoing Support Groups are facilitated, topic-focused educational conversations for LGBTQ+ youth and survivors of sexual assault.
- Two Annual Forums—the GSA Forum and Trans Youth Forum—are one day conferences with speakers and multi-track programs to share resources and encourage social networking.