Catalyst - FALL 2021 VOL 4 NO 2 - Page 3




Georgia campaign for adolescent power & potential

Can you give us a quick overview of GCAPP? What are some of your main areas of focus, and what are your goals?

The Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Power & Potential (GCAPP) was founded in 1995 as teen pregnancy prevention organization when Georgia had the nation's highest teen birth rate. GCAPP successfully convened stakeholders from across the state–mobilizing resources and building partner capacity––and as a result, by 2012 the teen birth rate in Georgia had declined by 50%. At this point, GCAPP made the decision to expand our mission to include a more holistic approach to adolescent health and wellness through the focus areas of Youth Empowerment, Comprehensive Sex Education, Teen Pregnancy Prevention, Parent Engagement, and Physical Activity & Nutrition. Since its inception 26 years ago, the teen birth rate has fallen by nearly 72 percent, and GCAPP remains the only organization devoted to building the capacity of schools and community-based organizations to implement tested and proven adolescent health programs for youth across Georgia.

Our vision is that all young people have a safe and healthy adolescence characterized by hope, respect, and opportunity for the future. Working with more than 300 partners and organizations across the state, we convene, collaborate, train, and help communities expand evidenced-based programs that work. Since 2017, we have provided over 180,000 adolescents with health curricula and initiatives and trained over 2,000 youth-serving providers utilizing best practices for working and engaging with young people. 

Guided by our Formula for Change, GCAPP has taken significant steps toward achieving our ambitious goals, outlined in our new strategic plan, Impact 2025: Advancing Adolescent Health, to impact 575,000 youth, parents and youth-serving professionals and expand our programmatic reach into 80 of Georgia’s counties by 2025.

An Interview with Ronald McNeill, GCAPP President & CEO