Executive Director of Be THE Voice®, Debbie Cwalina is so excited to announce that the program specializing in helping students understand the power of the bystander is in its fifth year! Roswell Rotarians Debbie and co-founder Michael Schoppenhorst have worked tirelessly since creation in 2015 to make Be THE Voice® a success. Debbie says, “It has been so incredible to watch how Be THE Voice® creates changes for children and in October of 2019, BTV5 was launched in 47 schools, impacting over 50,000 students throughout Georgia.”
In 2015, Debbie read an article about cyberbullying that lit a fire in her soul. She understood the damaging effects of bullying after watching a family member struggle through it while growing up. She was determined to find a way to help students safely defuse a bullying situation. After months of research, she says, “The answer was clear—teach kids effective communication skills, and they will find their voice and use it for good.” The program launched in 2015 in 8 schools.
Be THE Voice is unique in that it is a student-led program that provides schools with a character building initiative that helps students understand the "power of the bystander."The program revolves around powerful weekly video testimonials shown school-wide. BTV found that bullying was reduced by 56% after only three months! Be THE Voice has evolved into more than an “anti-bullying” program as students embrace the power they have to “do good.” It is about being a voice for change in all sorts of tough situations.
How is BTV celebrating this anniversary? By doing something unique... a BTV Toga Party on February 29! “This is also a huge thank you to all those that have been part of Be THE Voice for the past five years. So many Rotarians have been involved in making this program successful”, says Debbie. “We’re going to take a moment to celebrate and then get focused on fall of 2020.There are many more schools in Georgia and beyond where BTV can help make a difference in kids’ lives.”
For more information about BTV, go to https://be-the-voice.org/
To get tickets or become a sponsor of the Toga Party, please visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/86691102421