Through Community Strength Projects, Men of Strength Club members become activist leaders in their schools and communities in the prevention of violence against women. Projects range from awareness-raising acitivies on campus to partnering with women's groups for Take Back the Night or V-Day events. Check out some of the most recent projects below.
Our MOST Clubs around the country carried out some great Community Strength Projects to end the 2011-2012 school year. Check them out:
Check out this great public service announcement on street harassment from our Delaware MOST Club. The PSA gives examples of street harassment and offers a positive counterstory for teens communicating with each other on the street. The PSA was created, written, directed, and acted by high school MOST Club members and their friends. This PSA really shows how creative and passionate our MOST Club members are about preventing gender-based violence and creating a positive environment for all people in their school and on the street. Great job Delaware MOST Club!
At Mott Hall V School in New York City, the MOST Club made shirts for Valentine's Day that highlighted statements that can be said in an abusive relationship. They sold the shirts to staff and used the money to purchase flowers. They also created a short presentation with stats about teen relationship violence. When they visited the rooms, they gave carnation flowers to ALL of the girls in their school. MOST Club Mentor Jason Fuscaldo said, "It was inspiring to see the pride the young men had as they presented the flowers and to see the smiles the girls had on their faces."
Finally, MOST Club members from schools across Washington, DC participated in an important research project on teen dating violence. The Federal Interagency Workgroup on Teen Dating Violence, in collaboration with Concept Systems, Inc. (CSI), is conducting research to better understand how youth conceptualize healthy and unhealthy dating relationships. A recent review of the teen dating violence research indicated that youth are rarely involved in research, and this project is an effort to understand the views of youth, as well as how they might be similar to or different from the views of adults. MOST Club members provided important data and feedback for the project and served the field of primary prevention of gender-based violence in a crucial way.
On Friday February 17, the Men of Strength Club at Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington, DC hosted an installment of Solutions Through Film, MOST Club's film and discussion series. In honor of Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month, the group showed a short film on teen dating violence created by Mind Warp Entertainment LLC in collaboration with the El Paso County Attorney's Office. The film can be viewed in its entirety here. The MOST Club showed the film to about 60 tenth grade young men and had a discussion afterward facilitated by Men Can Stop Rape's Director of Community Education Jason Page and MOST Club member Nile Myers.
On Feb. 23, two MOST Club members, Maurice from Beaufort High School and Tahj from Whale Branch High School in Beaufort, SC, took to the stage to perform original poetry for a group of 36 middle school MOST Club students from Ridgeland Middle School, also located in South Carolina.
The students who performed, are both seniors and also members of a media arts and performance group called LOUD (www.livingouturdreams.org). Maurice and Tahj performed pieces that dealt with substance abuse, physical abuse, and violent imagery in the media. Discussion on the poems were held as well. MOST Club students identified concepts in the pieces to include objectification, traditional masculinity, and unhealthy relationships. The middle school students were moved by the original work of Maurice and Tahj, that many took to writing their own original pieces and brought them in to share during check in at their next session.