OKLAHOMA CITY — The Tobacco Settlement Endowment Fund has opened a new statewide funding opportunity for programs that promote youth character development for students in grades three through eight.
TSET has issued a request for proposals from organizations that can offer programs that provide education and character-building opportunities with the goal of building the leadership and decision-making skills of young Oklahomans.
Healthy habits learned in early adulthood and investments in helping young people make healthy choices support TSET’s mission to prevent and reduce smoking and obesity.
“Character development efforts have been shown to encourage healthy behavior and decision-making at all levels, preparing children and adolescents to remain strong in the face of outside pressure for risky behaviors and healthy behaviors. negative,” said Julie Bisbee, executive director of TSET. “Today’s youth face more challenges than ever, and investing in Oklahoma’s children helps put us on the right path to a strong start.”
Oklahoma ranks among the lowest on nearly every measure of child well-being: 42nd in health, 33rd in economic well-being, 45th in education, and 41st in positive family and community supports. The state also ranks 5th in the nation for children affected by negative childhood experiences, with 20% of Oklahoma children under 17 having experienced two or more ACEs, such as domestic violence, divorce, parental substance abuse or neglect.
A high-quality character education helps reduce the negative impact of difficult childhood experiences by promoting social norms that protect against violence and adversity.
Since its inception, TSET has strategically invested in comprehensive, evidence-based programs and is the state’s leading funder of prevention, creating an environment for Oklahoma’s youth to build healthy habits that empower them. will be beneficial throughout their lives.
Beginning in fiscal year 2020, TSET launched the TSET Healthy Youth Initiative, a three-part initiative aimed specifically at reaching Oklahoma’s youth.
The first phase of the TSET Healthy Youth Initiative is a statewide public education campaign for teens ages 13-18 focused on preventing and reducing smoking and obesity.
The campaign promotes healthy lifestyle choices for young people and gives parents resources to help their children maintain or develop healthy habits for life.
In fiscal 2021, TSET launched the second phase of the Healthy Youth initiative, Youth Action for Health Leadership (YAHL). YAHL is a statewide youth-led initiative for ninth through 12th graders that promotes a healthier Oklahoma free of tobacco addiction and obesity.
This Request for Proposals seeks to fund the third phase of the series of youth initiatives.
TSET seeks to fund programs, both in-school and out-of-school, that will impact 35-50 locations across the state. Programs should include sections on abstinence from tobacco, physical activity and healthy eating.
TSET has set aside up to $1 million per year over four years for a total of up to $4.5 million, beginning in January 2023. Applications must be submitted by 4 p.m. on September 19.
Common and higher educational institutions, public entities, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, and tribal entities are welcome to apply.
For full guidelines and application information, visit bit.ly/3B1ePvh.