Promoting safe and healthy relationships for youth
Expect Respect, serving the Austin area since 1989, works to promote healthy relationships and prevent violence and abuse among children and teens. We provide innovative, research-based programs and trainings and collaborate with schools, health-care, law enforcement, and other youth-serving organizations to create a safer environment for all young people.
Our in-school support groups were effective at reducing violence and victimization. Read more about our CDC program evaluation here.
We believe that safe and supportive relationships are key to good health, well-being, and school success. Unfortunately, 60 percent of children experience some form of violence each year and nearly half report more than one incident. Studies show that exposure to violence can negatively affect a young person’s physical and mental health, relationships, and academic performance and increase their risk for future victimization and perpetration of violence.
Teen dating abuse is a public health concern. 21 percent of female and 10 percent of male high school students experience physical and/or sexual violence from a dating partner. Survivors have higher rates of unintended pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, eating disorders, substance abuse, and suicidal thoughts and behaviors.
Expect Respect works at the forefront of prevention and early intervention to break the cycle of abuse in children’s lives and prevent violence from happening in the first place. Expect Respect is built on an ecological, trauma-informed model that supports vulnerable youth who have already been exposed to violence, mobilizes youth leaders, and promotes safe schools and communities. Our primary program components and resources include:
- School-based support groups and counseling
- Youth leadership development
- Educational theater
- The Expect Respect® program manual and one-day training
- Resources for educators