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Healthy Respect Celebrates National Week of Love and Marriage

This Valentine's Day, Give the Gift of Waiting

Healthy Respect is joining other abstinence until marriage groups throughout the nation on Valentine’s Day to spread the message that abstinence is a great way to prepare for successful marriage. The Week of Valentine’s Day (February 11-17) has been declared National Week of Love and Marriage, which underscores the immense benefits that abstinence until marriage brings to individuals, couples and society at large.

“We have found in our classroom instruction in New York inner-city schools, that young people are open to the abstinence message, but they need guidance, good scientific and medical information and a lot of encouragement to accept abstinence as a personal commitment,” said John Margand, Esq., Executive Director of Healthy Respect. “The pendulum has swung so much toward sexual activity as the norm for teens that to talk to them about abstinence today is almost counter-cultural.

To promote its proven program, Healthy Respect will soon release a DVD that shows the people and the purpose behind the curriculum. The DVD includes interviews with the Healthy Respect directors and instructors as well as testimonies by school administrators and educators about how Healthy Respect helps them to reach students in a positive way on the sensitive subject of sexuality and personal choices.

“In three years, we’ve experienced a high level of success that has been documented by an independent team of evaluators,” Margand explained. “We want to show the work that goes into that success and give the educators we partner with a chance to tell the Healthy Respect story from their perspective.”

The theme of National Week of Love and Marriage underlines the benefits of abstinence. For young people, abstinence means avoiding pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases that can derail academic performance and ruin a teen’s health for life. As taught by the Healthy Respect instructors, abstinence also means developing self-respect and setting goals for life that will place teens on a track to success. It also means preparing for a good marriage by saving yourself for the one person you will promise to love and stay with.

Abstinence also holds immense benefits for society by reducing the number of out-of-wedlock births and breaking the cycle of poverty that often begins with pregnant teens, and saving millions of dollars in medical care that is given to youngsters who contract sexually transmitted diseases.

“Abstinence is more than just saying ‘no’ to sex,” Margand stressed. “It is saying ‘yes’ to self-respect, ‘yes’ to academic achievement, ‘yes’ to career goals and future success, and ‘yes’ to a good marriage with love that lasts. When you tell it to young people this way – which is really the way it is – they listen and understand that waiting is worthwhile. That’s the theme of our Valentine’s Day message, ‘Give the Gift of Waiting.’”