[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Thursday, 22 January, 2004, 12:27 GMT
American Virgins
Teenagers at Silver Ring Thing event
Teenagers gather to purify mind and body at Silver Ring Thing event

It's all about abstinence.

At least, that's what the Silver Ring Thing movement is teaching teenagers in the United States.

More and more young people are pledging themselves to abstinence programmes - saying no to sex before marriage.

Established in 1995, the Silver Ring Thing is a faith-based organisation based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It's one of hundreds of abstinence movements across America that promote self-restraint rather than sex education.

This film tells the story of the kids who take the Silver Ring Thing on the road, organising rallies and events to spread the word.

Teenagers attending the events pay $12 (7). In return, they get a bible and silver ring. The ring is to be worn as a constant reminder of their pledge to remain virgins until marriage.

Erica Harold
Miss America 2003, Erica Harold, lends her support to the campaign

The movement is also part-funded by the federal government. President Bush himself is a strong supporter of abstinence programmes.

In the film, Miss America 2003, Erica Harold, is the star guest for the launch of a national programme seeking to purify the young.

In some schools in the US, abstinence is now taught instead of sex education.

But will it mean a generation of kids are learning about sex from the street and the media, rather than the classroom? This World explores the debate.

American Virgins was broadcast in the UK on Sunday, 25 January, 2004 at 2100 on BBC Two.

SEE ALSO:
The power of the ring thing
22 Jan 04  |  This World
Chastity pressed on US teens
18 Sep 03  |  Americas
Britney's boast busts virgin myth
09 Jul 03  |  Entertainment
Sex lessons
18 Jul 02  |  4x4 Reports
Bush Aids plan to include condoms
30 Jan 03  |  Americas


RELATED BBC LINKS:

RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific