• Journal Article

Yo Puedo-A Conditional Cash Transfer and Life Skills Intervention to Promote Adolescent Sexual Health: Results of a Randomized Feasibility Study in San Francisco

Citation

Minnis, A., Vandommelen-Gonzalez, E., Luecke, E., Dow, W., Bautista-Arredondo, S., & Padian, N. S. (2014). Yo Puedo-A Conditional Cash Transfer and Life Skills Intervention to Promote Adolescent Sexual Health: Results of a Randomized Feasibility Study in San Francisco. Journal of Adolescent Health, 55(1), 85-92. DOI: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2013.12.007

Abstract

PURPOSE: We designed and evaluated for feasibility an intervention-Yo Puedo-that addresses social network influences and socioeconomic opportunities in a neighborhood with substantial gang exposure and early childbearing. METHODS: Yo Puedo combined conditional cash transfers for completion of educational and reproductive health wellness goals with life skills sessions, and targeted youth 16-21 years of age and same-aged members of their social network. We conducted a two-arm study with social networks randomized to the intervention or a standard services control arm. We evaluated intervention uptake, adherence, and safety; and assessed evidence of effects on behavioral outcomes associated with unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infection risk. RESULTS: A total of 72 social networks composed of 162 youth enrolled, with 92% retention over 6 months. Seventy-two percent of youth randomized to the intervention participated in intervention activities: 53% received at least one conditional cash transfer payment and 66% came to at least one life skills session. We found no evidence that cash payments financed illicit or high-risk behavior. At 6 months, compared with controls, intervention participants had a lower odds of hanging out on the street frequently (odds ratio [OR], .54; p = .10) and a lower odds of reporting that their close friends had been incarcerated (OR, .6; p = .12). They reported less regular alcohol use (OR, .54; p = .04) and a lower odds of having sex (OR, .50; p = .04). CONCLUSIONS: The feasibility evaluation of Yo Puedo demonstrated its promise; a larger evaluation of effects on pregnancy and sustained behavioral changes is warranted