Newtown, CT — With the unprecedented levels of stress and anxiety students are facing now, it’s more important than ever to know the warning signs of potential violence and self-harm, and “say something” when seeing these behaviors. Developing and supporting an inclusive school culture where students look out for one another and have trusted adults to rely on for help is critical.
Sandy Hook Promise (SHP), a leading gun violence prevention and school safety organization, announced the winners of its 6th annual Say Something Week Awards. The awards recognize the creative ways schools and SAVE Promise Clubs celebrate “upstanders” who speak up to get help for classmates who may be in crisis, and acknowledge the trusted adults who are keeping kids safe. In the Palos School District near Chicago, students helped to organize a parade of First Responders who were celebrated as “trusted adults,” while the students at the Triad Math and Science Academy in North Carolina organized a virtual Town Hall for their classmates.
“Research consistently shows that most school shootings and suicides are planned in advance, preceded by some form of warning sign,” said Nicole Hockley, co-founder and managing director of Sandy Hook Promise and mother of Dylan, who was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy. “By teaching what these signs are and who to talk to when seeing concerning behaviors, we empower students to look out for each other, which prevents tragedies and saves lives. These winning schools and SAVE Promise Clubs led by inspiring student upstanders have found innovative ways to reinforce the importance of these critical aspects of keeping schools safe. I’m grateful for their leadership.”
This year’s winners are:
- Canton High School, Connecticut
- North Marion Middle School SAVE Promise Club, Florida
- Palos School District 118 SAVE Promise Club, Illinois
- Triad Math and Science Academy SAVE Promise Club, North Carolina
- Vero Beach High School, Florida
- Westmont Hilltop High School, Pennsylvania
All winners will receive a $300 prize, an awards certificate, and recognition on Sandy Hook Promise’s website and social channels. Award-winning videos and slideshows were also screened during the National SAVE Promise Club Youth Summit that was held on April 17, 2021. SHP selected winners based on the level of student leadership, involvement, and program sustainability, along with the breadth and depth of the activities that students submitted.
To date, more than 12 million people nationwide have participated in Sandy Hook Promise’s proven Know the Signs programs that focus on prevention to help end the epidemic of gun violence by training youth and adults how to identify at-risk behavior and intervene to get help before a tragedy can occur. Through these no-cost programs, Sandy Hook Promise has averted multiple school shooting plots, teen suicides, and countless other acts of violence.
About Sandy Hook Promise
Sandy Hook Promise (SHP) is a national nonprofit organization with a mission to end school shootings and create a culture change that prevents violence and other harmful acts that hurt children. Through its life-saving, evidence-informed Know the Signs prevention programs, SHP educates and empowers youth and adults to recognize, intervene, and get help for individuals who may be socially isolated and/or at risk of hurting themselves or others. Through nonpartisan policy and partnerships, SHP advances gun safety, youth mental health, and violence prevention education at the state and federal levels that protect all children from gun violence in their schools, homes, and communities. SHP is led by several family members whose loved ones were killed in the tragic mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012. Learn more at www.sandyhookpromise.org
Aimee Thunberg, Senior Director, Communications, Sandy Hook Promise | [email protected] | 646.761.5579