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Fifteen high school students graduated from Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic’s (PPHP) Teen Information and Peer Services program on Tuesday, December 10 at Ramapo High School in Spring Valley. PPHP’s Teen Information and Peer Services (TIPS) program educates teen volunteers about sexual and reproductive health so they can in turn educate their peers. The students, or TIPSters, complete 14 hours of training on topics including minor’s rights, puberty, gender identity, sexual orientation, contraception, STI and safer sex, consent, healthy relationships, youth activism, and community outreach.

After graduation, the TIPSters meet twice a month for the remainder of the school year with PPHP Education staff for continued learning opportunities and support on topics including reproductive justice, racial equity, college preparation, self-care, and career development. The TIPSters also will co-facilitate education programs with PPHP community health educators, participate in community events and outreach opportunities, and engage local elected officials on issues important to them.

New York State Assembly member’s Ellen Jaffee and Ken Zebrowski presented each graduate with a certificate of accomplishment and congratulated them on their efforts to educate their peers.

PPHP’s TIPS program has been educating teens in Rockland County for more than 20 years. Hundreds of teens have graduated from the program and become important resources for other teens. Many also continue their involvement with Planned Parenthood through a college program called Planned Parenthood Generation Action.