“I am an advocate of Healthy Respect because I believe that you should wait for the right person and it all revolves around your future. You need to have your standards and set goals for yourself.”
– Peer Educator

“Healthy Respect speaks to them about who they are, their hopes, goals and dreams, their relationship with others. How to put things in perspective and in an hierarchy, prioritizing their needs.” 
– Fern Eisgrub, Director of Curriculum, Yonkers Public School

“I think that this is a great program and that if it… became a model for other school districts around the country, I think that would be very good.”
– Yonkers Mayor Philip A. Amicone

“I know among me and my friends who were in the program [in high school], we had such a respect and knowledge of (risk avoidance) and making healthy decisions. I think the Healthy Respect program really prepared me for the situations that go on a daily basis, from drugs, sex alcohol tobacco.”
“This experience has really helped me in college.”
-Toni Green, Dean’s List Sophomore at Syracuse University

“When we had the opportunity to bring Healthy Respect into our school as part of our program, we welcomed it because we knew it would add another dimension and it would help develop character in our students and it would help us develop students of substance. I’m impressed with how dedicated those individuals who come from Healthy Respect are, and how seriously they take their work. I’m also impressed with how serious our students take the curriculum.”
 – Rocco Grassi, Principal, Gorton High School

Young people are precious. Each one is unique. They deserve the best we can offer in academics so they can achieve their personal and professional potential. They also deserve the information and guidance they need to advance healthy and whole to mature adulthood — physically, psychologically and socially.

“The biggest failure is that by and large people have never told the youth of America that we believe in them, and that’s what programs need to do. If you want to be successful, you can’t just spew out information to kids and expect them to embrace a concept and live by it. You need to give students the core fundamentals of empowerment by telling them that we believe that they can make good and healthy choices, not just for one day, for one week, not just until they graduate from a specific program, but that they can learn to make good healthy choices over the course of a lifetime.”
– Dr. Nanci Coppola, Executive Director

 “I think that there’s a majority of students that would love to have the strategies to say no, and the abstinence program gives them those types of strategies so they can continue positive
relationships but they don’t have to go to the extent that may cause undue
concerns in the future.”
– Bernard Pierorazio, Superintendent of Schools, Yonkers Public Schools

“Sexual health education in this country needs fresh thinking and that is what (risk avoidance) education provides.”
– John P. Margand, Esq.

I would hope that a program like this not only continues to thrive in Yonkers, but also catches on around the country… Children are facing very much the same pressures all over the country… and a lot of this has to do with having sex at a young age… I think that this is a great program and that if it… became a model for other school districts around the country, I think that would be very good.
– Mayor Phillip A. Amicone

“The initial evaluation results suggested that HRYDP was meeting or exceeding the goals set for itself and meeting the A-H criteria set by the federal government. These results are significantly different from the comparison group results. This suggests that the program is having an impact on students’ knowledge & attitudes in targeted areas.”
Dr. Robin Rogers, Ph.D.
Dana Weinberg, Ph.D.

“I am going to tell my fellow principals, you need to get involved in this program. It’s an excellent opportunity to give your students a way to build strong relationships and to develop character.”
– Rocco Grassi, Principal. Gorton High School

“The program helps to equip our students by teaching them how to think clearly, raising awareness, enhancing awareness, and then saying once you’re aware of the situation, given this set of facts, what are you going to do about it. So it enhances awareness and then tries to provide students with skills to deal with the realities that life presents on a daily basis, whatever the problem is.”
– Rocco Grassi, Principal, Gorton High School, 2007

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