Wednesday, May 27, 2009

International Teen Outreach Program – 13 Years of Building Healthy Communities and Healthy Youth

International Teen Outreach Program (ITOP) is a 13-year old program at Oasis Center that is dedicated to helping international youth in Nashville area schools. More than 250 immigrant, refugee, and first generation American youth participate in ITOP each year. They come from more than 25 countries and speak 20 different languages.

ITOP aims to prevent teen pregnancy and substance abuse, improve school performance, and promote the exploration of college and career options. These are very asset-rich goals that build the assets of Achievement motivation, Restraint, Resistance skills, Sense of purpose, Positive view of personal future, and more.

Youth work in groups with Oasis staff to identify and address their personal challenges, and also identify ways in which they can contribute to improving their community and the world. This is a great example of a youth organization building the Support asset in young people.

Their service-learning projects help young people grow in leadership, generosity, and community connections, while addressing serious social issues in Nashville. These service projects help to build the assets of Community values youth, Youth as resources, Service to others, Caring, and Equality and social justice.

Summer programs help expose youth to career opportunities through field trips to businesses and colleges, while engaging them in enrichment and recreational activities.

As students discover their strengths and talents, they are motivated and supported in making healthy choices regarding alcohol and drugs, nonviolence, relationships and sexuality, education and career aspirations, community building, and volunteerism.

This one program intentionally builds at least 25 of the 40 assets – that’s a great way to support international students in our schools!

For more information, contact Judy Freudenthal at (615) 327-4455 or You can find out about other great programs at their website -