Sandy Hook Promise campaign teaches students to speak out to prevent violence during a nationwide week of action
Newtown, CT. — School violence is impacting our youth at alarming rates, but students nationwide participating in Say Something Week, an initiative led by Sandy Hook Promise from March 14-18, are determined to do something about it.
Each year, thousands of schools and youth organizations nationwide participate in Say Something Week, a week of celebrating the importance of trusted adults and upstanders speaking out to prevent violence in their communities. The national call-to-action campaign raises awareness about the warning signs of those who may be at risk of violence or self-harm. Through a variety of student-led activities, the campaign empowers youths to take action to create safer and more inclusive environments in their schools.
Schools can participate in the week of action or join the celebration throughout the month of March with activities like asking students to write down who they consider to be Trusted Adults, as well as develop a plan to write a letter to tell these Trusted Adults why they were selected as a person the student would “Say Something” to if they see warning signs that someone might hurt themselves or others. Other school activities have included helping students to organize selfie-stations or Instagram photo booths where students can show the importance of being an Upstander and share on social media why they “pledge to Say Something” and ways to look out for their fellow classmates.
Students, parents, and educators can find more activities and resources on the Sandy Hook Promise Say Something Resources webpage, including a Student Training Guide with activities for engaging students while teaching them to recognize the warning signs and take action, an Educators’ Guide with lesson plans to keep the Say Something message alive throughout the year and a Virtual Activity Guide for students learning remotely.
“Say Something Week is an opportunity to celebrate the upstanders who are making a real difference in their communities,” said Nicole Hockley, co-founder and CEO of Sandy Hook Promise, and mother of Dylan who was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting. “Students are often in the best position to know if one of their classmates is struggling because they’re closest to the conversations that are taking place on social media and happening in real time amongst their peers. By learning to recognize the warning signs and reaching out for help, youth today are making their schools a safer place, and are saving lives every day.”
As a result of social and academic pressures, students are struggling with increased mental health issues. Suicide is now the second-leading cause of death among youth. Knowing the warning signs and when to seek help from a Trusted Adult are proven to save lives.
To date, nearly 15 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.
Sandy Hook Promise (SHP) envisions a future where all children are free from school shootings and other acts of violence. As a national nonprofit organization, SHP’s mission is to educate and empower youth and adults to prevent violence in schools, homes, and communities. Creators of the life-saving, evidence-informed “Know the Signs” prevention programs, SHP teaches the warning signs of someone who may be in crisis, socially isolated, or at-risk of hurting themselves or others and how to get help. SHP also advances school safety, youth mental health, and responsible gun ownership at the state and federal levels through nonpartisan policy and partnerships. 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 | [email protected] | 646-761-5579
Kristin Kepplinger | [email protected]| 212-255-2575 x109