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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

16 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Protect Yourself 1 is a wonderful organization which deserves to be supported for their work with those who represent the future of our world. Their Safe2Live, Project Arrowhead and "Be a Protector" life-changing entertaining programs, have been beautifully designed to provide awareness to the most vulnerable populations, and education in the protection of our planet.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am so impressed with the level of professionalism shown by the PY1 team. All of them have a heart to serve with excellence. Their approaches are innovative and relevant to a variety of audiences. We are looking forward to collaborating with PY1 in the future.

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a professional in the private sector and have collaborated with PY1 on an informal basis for the past several months. During that time I’ve been thoroughly impressed with their vision of leveraging digital and interactive technology for AIDS and HIV education. As I’ve also dabbled in philanthropic work I can attest as to how important this vision is, especially for the younger generation for whom digital technology is almost a native language.

I hope others will support and get involved with PY1 and help them realize this vision.

2 Paterne M.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Protect Yourself1 has helped us push our prevention program to the next level by putting our program in a youth attractive format. What is better than to find the right and best channel to convey one’s message to the audience? Thanks PY1 and keep up the great work…

Joyce40

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am the organizer of TechSoup's NonProfit Commons in Second Life community of nonprofit practitioners , NGOs, and those who support social good organizations. Protect Yourself 1, is a valuable, long-time member of this community, who have shared their best practices and wisdom gleamed through the amazing work they do. They have also hosted numerous networking and awareness raising events for their professional peers. They are a community asset, doing great work, and share back freely to the community-at-large.

fisoma

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Humanbe and Protect Yourself 1 are partners since 2013 to develop the Be A Protector Campaign – A social media and distance learning campaign to promote environmental education and sustainability, and provide community-level solutions for under-served, under-represented vulnerable populations to live healthier lives.

It is a great pleasure to work with the PY1 team comprised of professionals and share our goals to educate youth about a healthy lifestyle and environment protection...

Tasha W.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

PY1 is such an amazing program! The team of professionals there helped me and a group of students complete a SWOT analysis of their program. Not only did we find their program to be strong and fluid, but the connection and relationships we gained with them is unforgettable! Thank you PY1 for the great work that you do! Your community is very blessed to have you!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

PY1 is no ordinary non-profit organization I have come across.Being from Africa,and specifically Kenya,where there are so many NGOs working on issues concerning on youth education,I am confident to say PY1 has stood out for me as quite unique. PY1 exhibits that helping young people is not just about giving them information, but making them be part of what they acquire. For example the use of horses,appreciating the environment, use of social media for youth to share experiences, these are elements that guide the young people to appreciate what is around them. That life is not just about problems and what you don't have, but embracing what is around you.There are many gifts around us but we do not easily identify them.
Molding young people in different ways to discover themselves and that's how they get to identify their strengths.In this way,the weaknesses and vulnerability are overshadowed by the wonderful discoveries.That is what PY1 has taught me.To me, PY1 is a guide who journeys with the young person to get to that destination of total discovery and empowerment.
As a youth educator in a faith based organization, I feel blessed to be associated with PY1 and for being such a source of innovative ideas for educating young people.
PY1, keep building this vital foundation by educating the youth,as you will be securing a great tomorrow.

beverlymjones

Advisor

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.

John-Manuel A.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

PY1, Inc. uses cutting-edge technologies and innovative programming to provide education about HIV and other sexually transmitted infection to young people of color. Its team of highly experienced professionals and cost-effective programs let PY1, Inc. offer donors the most "bang for their buck." I have been working as a journalist and consultant on HIV-related issues for more than 25 years, and can say from lots of experience that PY1, Inc. stands out and is worthy of funding and a five-star ranking.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

PY1 has developed an innovative way to engage and educate youth. Their programming is entertaining and fun to participate in, while at the same time delivering positive messages and good advice that the audience can use.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Protect Yourself 1, Inc. [ PY1 ] is currently working with youths in the Baltimore City Schools system this year and next due to a generous grant from the Annie Casey Foundation...I had a chance to volunteer my services at their booth at the recent Global Aids Conference in Washington DC [ July 2012 ].I am very familiar with the organizations and the work they do in this region. What I witness was the amazing reactions that PY1 was recieving from men and women from all over the world. Everyone from Africa and Europe to the Caribbean and Latin America were amazed at the accomplishments of the organization andit reaches out to a diverse populations. People [ Gayand straight ] recognized how important and valuable that these type of programs reach young kids before they reach High school. Many testify how alot of kids in their country are bullied or cast out by their friends what for the unwanted pregnancy to STD's and HIV. They talk about the stigma is overwhelming. People all acknowledge that PY1 is a program that can reached out to their youth and I was recieving orders and inquiries on how they can bring PY1 to their village , tribes , provinces, urban cities, and countries. They view PY1 as a 5 "star" organizationwith a program as a 5 "star" Safe Sex educational program. My experiences was of true amazement. I went away that evening totally blown away as to how many people of all ages and skin colors were affected by the mission and the dedicated staff of PY1. My experience as a professional in this field and a volunteer that week far PY1 far exceeded my expectation.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

Protect Yourself 1 is a dedicated educational group that seeks to present highly sensitive science information about HIV, STIs and other illnesses in a framework and medium that is both portable and palatable for children of all ages. PY1 has been accepted in local schools to conduct activities and full school presentations at all class levels. PY1 takes learning through skits and puppetry to a whole new level. Extremely enjoyable, highly interactive - bottom line, kids LEARN!

John78

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

ProtectYourself1 has proven to be one of the best tools for reaching an important market across the nation which is very important to those of us who are health professionals. I am a Senior Fellow in Social Marketing with the National Center for Health Behavioral Change (www.nchbc.org) which is funded by the Kellogg Foundation, and the one responsible for bringing PY1 to the attention of our Principal Investigator, Dr. Jay C. Chunn. We write the curriculum for the school of publichealth at MOrgan State University in Baltimore, MD, and advise other schools of public health across the nation. At the time (2004) we were preparing to participate in a national conference on HIV & AIDS in Atlanta, GA (a city known for men on the "down low", and the home of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). By partnering with PY1, and making PY1's club video available to night clubs in the city, and using it as an incentive to get conference attendees to visit our table, we were able to get the HIV prevention message distributed to over 100 cities in less than six weeks. In addition NCHBC was able to grow its mailing list for future collaborations with health care professionals all over the nation. PY1 is an important organization in the effort to keep attention focused on HIV & AIDS because now that people are living longer with the infection disease many have retruned to risky behavior. PY1's music, and video format is perfectly tailored to educate without being intrusive, or condemning. The message resonates, and is free of stigma. PY1 has my vote. John Milton Wesley

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Protect Yourself1 has a strong and vibrant track record of utilizing leading edge technology to adress long term health needs of adolescents. PY1 has received accolades from AIDS.gov and other groups who are planning for the next coming wave of health related social media. They are an ethically governed organization that is a good conservator of their resources. Simply put, they implement innovative HIV/AIDS programs for youthi with minimal capital. They are worthy of strong support

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

I am very impressed with the work of ProtectYourself1. The program is able to use innovative strategies to really reach youth around HIV prevention. As we look at ways to ensure that our next generation is healthy and productive, ProtectYoursel1 uses technology and strategies that very few use. Virtual programming is the way of the future. Thanks for stepping up to the plate to save our youth.