AUBURN, Alabama — Alabama Extension’s Family and Child Development Team recently received an Anti-Bullying Hero Award for the implementation of its Be SAFE program.
The award was given June 21 during the Hero Awards Luncheon at the Anti-Bullying Summit in Peachtree City, Georgia.
The Hero Award honors individuals or groups who take the initiative to be “upstanders” and work for change in schools and communities.
Hero Awards are considered for six categories:
- K-12 Student (Individual);
- Teacher/Counselor/School-Based Leader (Individual);
- Community or Global Leader (Individual);
- Community or Global Leaders (Group);
- School (Group).
A selection team reviewed all nominations and used a rubric to assess the quality of nomination materials and the worthiness of the nominees. The Family and Child Development team won the category for Community Leaders.
“Dr. Adrienne Duke and the FCD Team are doing tremendous work to address bullying in Alabama,” said Linda Dean with the Truman Pierce Institute. The Truman Pierce Institute was one of the Summit’s sponsors.
The Alabama Extension Team uses a research-based curriculum — Be SAFE: Safe, Affirming and Fair Environments — to improve social and emotional skills, while educating to prevent bullying, bias and harassment.
Schools receive a set of five Be SAFE lessons that utilize role playing, discussion and problem-solving activities. The lessons help youth intervene in bullying situations. The goal of the program is to build a peer culture intolerant of victimization.
Program reached more than 4,000 youth
This team has reached more than 4,000 youth in 20 counties throughout Alabama. In addition, it has reached numerous principals, counselors, teachers and after-school program leaders. These leaders have asked the Extension Team to continue the training, year after year.
4-H youth development agents support the program
Alabama 4-H agents and the FCD team partnered to implement this curriculum and expand its reach to more youth. The lessons learned in Be SAFE translate into improved school and community environments.
“This FCD Team’s research-based program is a gold standard for positively effecting the lives of Alabama families,” Dean said.
“The impact on the youth involved in this program certainly translates to their home and community environments. There is an ‘all in’ feeling and culture among members that ensures this program has high impact and makes a difference,” said Dr. Kyle Kostelecky, assistant dean for Alabama Extension and assistant director of family and consumer science programs at Auburn University.
“Dr. Duke and the FCD Team are changing Alabama lives for the better,” Kostelecky added.
Truman Pierce Institute
The Auburn University College of Education’s Truman Pierce Institute and Auburn University’s Office of Professional and Continuing Education, hosted the Anti-Bullying Summit. The Summit provided teachers, school administrators, parents, community leaders, law enforcement, counselors, social workers and mental health professionals with opportunities to learn ways to address the issue of bullying in schools and communities.”