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Floreciendo: Improving Latina teens’ sexual and reproductive health

Floreciendo (“Blooming”), funded by NICHD (R00HD105490), is a sexual and reproductive health workshop for Latina teens (ages 14-18 years) and their female caregivers (e.g., mothers, aunts). Floreciendo was adapted from the IMARA evidence-based sexual health program for Black teens and their mothers. Dr. Kate Merrill (PI) and her team ran a small pilot of Floreciendo at Centro Romero – a community partner organization – over two days (Saturday and Sunday) with 3 teens and 3 female caregivers, 2 bilingual Latina facilitators from the UIC study team, and representatives from partner organizations (Centro Romero and the Kedzie Center) in July 2023. The team piloted the data collection tools and STI testing, and theater-tested each of the curriculum’s four sessions. The pilot was the culmination of over 2 years of work. Feedback from participants, facilitators, and observers revealed that Floreciendo was well received. Participants liked the activities, found the content useful, and appreciated the opportunity for shared activities and discussions in their teen/caregiver pairs. “I would recommend the program because it was fun and we move around and had very deep and interesting conversations on different topics.” (Floreciendo teen).

Dr. Merrill and team are currently planning the pilot optimization trial which will use the multiphase optimization strategy (MOST) framework.