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Promising Program Seal

Be Proud! Be Responsible!

Blueprints Program Rating: Promising

A six-session group intervention to reduce risky sexual behavior (unprotected sex) leading to potential HIV/STD contraction among adolescents. It teaches self-efficacy and skills that help to avoid risky sexual behavior.

Program Outcomes

  • Sexual Risk Behaviors
  • STIs

Program Type

  • After School
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Training
  • Peer Counseling and Mediation
  • School - Individual Strategies
  • Skills Training

Program Setting

  • Community (e.g., religious, recreation)
  • Hospital/Medical Center
  • School

Continuum of Intervention

  • Universal Prevention (Entire Population)
  • Selective Prevention (Elevated Risk)


  • Early Adolescence (12-14) - Middle School
  • Late Adolescence (15-18) - High School


  • Male and Female


  • All Race/Ethnicity


  • Blueprints: Promising

Program Information Contact

100 Enterprise Way. Suite G300
Scotts Valley, CA 95066
Tel: (800) 620-8884
Fax: (831) 438-4284
Main Website:
Program Website:

Program Developer/Owner

  • Loretta Sweet Jemmott, Ph.D.
  • University of Pennsylvania

Brief Description of the Program

Be Proud! Be Responsible! is designed to decrease the frequency of risky sexual behavior and related HIV/STD infection among minority (African American, Latino) adolescents. Based on cognitive-behavior theory, the program uses group discussions, videos, games, brain-storming, experiential exercises, and skill-building activities to improve teens knowledge about HIV and STDs, and to increase self-efficacy and skills that might help to avoid risky sexual behavior (e.g., abstinence, condom use). The intervention includes six sessions, of 60-minute length, led by trained facilitators, but can also be implemented within a school setting as part of the curriculum of a required health education class. The program can be implemented in a six-day, two-day, or one-day format.

See: Full Description


The strongest evidence for the program, compared to a general health control intervention, showed in the following long term (12 – month) effects:

  • The HIV/STD intervention (safer sex) resulted in significantly higher levels of condom use (Jemmott, Jemmott, & Fong 1998).
  • The HIV/STD interventions (skill-based, safer sex) reduced the frequency of unprotected intercourse (Jemmott, Jemmott, & Fong 1998; Jemmott et al. 2005).
  • The HIV/STD intervention (skill-based) reduced multiple sexual partners, and STD rates (Jemmott et al. 2005).

Weaker evidence for the program, compared to a general health control intervention, showed in the following medium (6-month) and short-term (3-month) effects:

  • The HIV/STD intervention significantly reduced unprotected intercourse, the frequency of anal intercourse and the number of anal sex partners, measured 6 months after the intervention (Jemmott et al. 1999).
  • Adolescents in the HIV intervention reported engaging in less risky sexual behavior (Jemmott, Jemmott, and Fong 1992).

Significant Program Effects on Risk and Protective Factors (as Mediating Variables):

  • Significant increases in HIV/STD and condom knowledge and safer sex-related skills (impulse control, condom negotiation, condom use).
  • Significant program effects on intentions to have less sexual intercourse (abstinence) and to use condoms more frequently.

Race/Ethnicity/Gender Details

Most of the studies have targeted African-Americans (Jemmott, Jemmott & Fong 1998, Jemmott et al. 1999) and Latinos (Jemmott et al. 2005) of both genders. It has been studied with a male only (Jemmott, Jemmott & Fong 1992) and a female only sample (Jemmott et al. 2005). Be Proud! Be Responsible! was also evaluated in a racially mixed sample (including whites, Asians, blacks, Latinos) for which the program was not effective (Borawski et al. 2009).

Risk and Protective Factors

Protective Factors
  • Individual: Clear standards for behavior*

*Risk/Protective Factor was significantly impacted by the program.

Training and Technical Assistance

Be Proud! Be Responsible! offers a two-day onsite training of educators, from 8:30-4:30, at an estimated $6,000 plus travel. Educators are trained to implement the curriculum with fidelity, model how to answer sensitive questions, do some values clarifications, and make fidelity-based adaptations. Training also include practice in conducting the lessons.

Training Certification Process

A 5-day train the trainer, offered on-site, for 8 trainees costs an estimated $25,000 plus travel. The five-day training includes fidelity monitoring, evaluation training, and training of facilitators. Participants who complete the training are certified to train others to be facilitators of the program.

Brief Evaluation Methodology

Out of the five studies evaluating Be Proud! Be Responsible!, four used the same design. Using a randomized controlled trial setup, these studies examined inner-city minority (African-American and Latino) adolescents (age 12 to 19) of both genders (Jemmott, Jemmott, & Fong 1998; Jemmott et al. 1999) or with single sex groups (Jemmott, Jemmott, & Fong 1992; Jemmott et al. 2005). The intervention activities changed only slightly across studies with varying foci (e.g., skill-based vs. information-based; abstinence vs. safer-sex), and varying length (5 to 8 hours) conducted as a Saturday program. Ideally, the program’s effectiveness in reducing risky sexual behavior was evaluated 12-months after intervention (Jemmott, Jemmott, & Fong 1998; Jemmott et al. 2005), but earlier studies only investigated long-term effects at 6-month (Jemmott et al. 1999) or 3-month (Jemmott, Jemmott, and Fong 1992) follow-ups.

One study did not follow this general approach. Borawski et al. (2009) extended the program to suburban and urban high schools. The authors used a school-based, group-randomized replication approach with students in grades 9 and 10 (N=1,576) of diverse racial background enrolled in 10 large urban and suburban high schools in the Midwest. Schools were paired by location (urban vs. suburban) socioeconomic status and racial composition. This study evaluated program effectiveness 12-months after the intervention.

Two other studies failed to use a control group or did not study behavioral outcomes but only mediators (Jemmott & Jemmott 1992; Jemmott et al. 1992).


Borawski, E.A., Traple, E.S., Adams-Tufts, K., Hayman, L.L., Goodwin, M.A. & Lovegreen, L.D. (2009). Taking Be Proud! Be Responsible! to the suburbs: A replication study. Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, 41(1),12-22.

Jemmott, L. S., & Jemmott, J. B. III (1992). Increasing condom-use intentions among sexually active inner-city adolescent women: Effects of an AIDS prevention program. Nursing Research, 41, 273-278.

Jemmott, J.B. III, Jemmott, L.S., Braverman, P.K., & Fong G.T. (2005). HIV/STD risk reduction interventions for African American and Latino adolescent girls at an adolescent medicine clinic: A randomized controlled trial. Archives of Pediatric Adolescent Medicine, 159, 440-449.

Jemmott, J.B., Jemmott, L.S., & Fong, G.T. (1998). Abstinence and safer sex HIV risk-reduction interventions for African American adolescents. Journal of the American Medical Association, 279(19), 1529-1536.

Jemmott, J. B., Jemmott, L. S., & Fong, G. T. (1992).Reductions in HIV risk-associated behaviors among black male adolescents: Effects of an AIDS prevention initiative. American Journal of Public Health, 82(3), 372-377.

Jemmott J.B., Jemmott, L.S., Fong, G.T., & McCaffree, K. (1999). Reducing HIV risk-associated sexual behavior among African American adolescents: Testing the generality of intervention effects. American Journal of Community Psychology, 27(2), 161-187.

Jemmott, L.S., Jemmott, J.B. III, & McCaffree, K.A. (1996). Be Proud! Be Responsible! Strategies to empower youth to reduce their risk for AIDS, Curriculum Manual. New York: Select Media.

Jemmott, J. B., Jemmott, L. S., Spears, H., Hewitt, N., & Cruz-Collins, M. (1992). AIDS information, self-efficacy, hedonistic expectancies, and condom-use intentions: Testing the information alone hypothesis. Journal of Adolescent Health, 13, 512-519.