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2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Protect Yourself 1, Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, Health Support, Nonprofit Management, Public & Societal Benefit, Public Health

Mission: PY1's mission is to increase precautionary awareness and individual responsibility with respect to HIV/AIDS through music, art, STEM and other media via educational events, programs and activities. PY1 strives to eliminate the taboos, myths and stigma associated with HIV, and to reduce risky behaviors and new infections.

Results: Since the SAFE2LIVE Program inception we have directly served 350 students in school settings and 500 children at community events. PY1’s Safe2Live© Program educates pre-adolescents and helps them to understand and identify risky behaviors, enhance their decision-making skills, and alleviate their fears. Safe2Live empowers youth with the information they need to take charge of their future, and the knowledge to make healthy lifestyle choices and changes. Based on our pre- and post- surveys, we can report that youth’s knowledge of HIV and other related diseases increased over 25% after participating in Safe2live. Since its inception Project Arrowhead© has served 320 adolescents’ at-risk youth from different organizations in Baltimore Maryland and Washington, DC: United Planning Organization (Providing Opportunities with Educational Readiness), Guide Program, Inc., Woodbourne School and Park Heights New Fellowship Christian Community; UMAR (Boxing and Youth Development Center) and Boys Hope - Girls Hope. The youth expressed satisfaction with the program and service workers and parents commented on increased positive behaviors of attendees.

Target demographics: Educate At-Risk Youth about HIV/AIDS/STIs

Direct beneficiaries per year: 100 At-Risk Youth scholars

Geographic areas served: Maryland and Washington DC, nationally and internationally.

Programs: Protect Yourself 1 has three complementary signature programs: Safe2Live Program – An HIV/STI awareness, education and prevention program that integrates dynamic health education and STEM skills acquisition in a student avatar-based virtual reality simulation. The Safe2Live curricula and content are certified and authorized by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Baltimore City Public Schools. Project Arrowhead – An award winning HIV and well being awareness, education and prevention program that incorporates health education, life skills and leadership development though horse husbandry, community gardening, nature education and physical challenge. The program strengthens disenfranchised youths abilities to achieve their potential through teamwork and collaboration. Be A Protector Campaign – A social media and distance learning campaign to promote environmental education and sustainability.

Community Stories

5 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters



Rating: 5

Over the past year, I have learned a lot about Protect Yourself1 and the team there. There is a great need for the inner city youth to gain experience, knowledge and assistance. Protect Yourself1 and Jar make this a reality. We truly appreciate all they do for the community and look forward to growing our relationship throughout the upcoming years.



Rating: 5

During 7 years, I was involved in PY1's organization as the Events Director. The corporate team is a small, tight-knit, organized, highly creative and motivated team of professionals working to develop programs and services aimed at increasing PY1's presence in the national fight against HIV/AIDS.

PY1 has developed programs such as Safe2Live or Project Arrowhead to engage youth living in high risk communities for HIV infection in the Washington- Baltimore corridor. The programs consist of state-of-the-art, culturally relevant, age-appropriate, and engaging educational productions to contribute to an AIDS-Free Generation.

PY1 deserves support and funding, the organization is transparent and is investing more than 90 % of their funding in these programs. I am very proud to have been part of such a great organization.

Previous Stories

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

My experience with Protect Yourself 1, Inc. as Events Director has been to organize events such as PY1 HEALTHSCAPE which is a great forum for PY1 to participate in the Community‘s efforts to make a difference in the fight against AIDS. Protect Yourself 1, Inc.'s partnership with church, government, community and business leaders enabled the development of PY1 HEALTHSCAPE as an Event that focuses on HIV/ STD testing, as well as other health issues affecting Inner City community residents. My role is to develop partnerships that PY1 HEALTHSCAPE will grow to have an increasing impact on many Communities and encourage positive health behavioral changes among African Americans from neighborhoods where the HIV infection rate is alarming.


Rating: 5

It has been a great inspiration to work alongside the volunteers and regular staff of PY1. The enthusiasm, passion, and dedication to service they bring to the struggle to eliminate HIV makes me feel this is something we can surely accomplish in my lifetime.


Rating: 5

As the social media consultant for Protect Yourself 1, Inc (PY1), it has been a pleaure working with the leadership and staff. It is always refreshing to see an organization embrace new media tools to enhance its mission and spread its message. I am indeed impressed with PY1's level of passion and efforts to reach their targeted populations in the most effective ways.


Rating: 4

I am the Founder/Executive Director of LIGHT, Health & Wellness Comprehensive Services, Inc. a Baltimore City community based organization that partners since 2010 with Protect Yourself, Inc. PY1 Educational and Entertainment Program features a social marketing media campaign which was implemented in Baltimore City where the HIV infection rate is still very high. PY1 produced the Safe2Live© Mobile Puppet Theater, a lively, dynamic, and informative puppet show, featuring characters from the music video/PSA, as well as live vocalists and performers, and pre- and post surveys to help monitor the effectiveness. It also includes many free educational materials, such as t-shirts, tile puzzles, and posters. The Safe2Live© Mobile Puppet Theater is approved by the Baltimore City Public School HIV and Human Sexuality Advisory Board/Panel, as well as the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) Infectious Disease and Environmental Health Administration (IDEHA) Community Review Panel (CRP). Safe2live is a successful HIV Awareness, Education and Prevention Campaign needed in Baltimore City.