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Red Lodge organization helps educators teach students about healthy peer relationships

By: 
Beth Hoover Violence Prevention
Educator and Communications Manager DSVS

Do you remember your first dating experience? Some of you out there just cringed – I saw that. Some of you smiled with sweet nostalgia. And some of you just walked out of the room.
For most of us as teenagers, dating was awkward, strange, uncomfortable, and almost impossible to figure out. Relationships were hard. And we didn’t know what to do. We were looking for a friend, a confidant, that person who would make us whole and love us no matter what. Unfortunately, we were left in the dark about what a healthy relationship should look like.
Power Up, Speak Out! is trying to change that. Created in Red Lodge by Domestic and Sexual Violence Services (DSVS), Power Up, Speak Out! is a five lesson toolkit for educators that encourages middle school students to think critically about their peer relationships. These lessons give a vision of what healthy relationships should look like, including information on power dynamics, red flags, boundaries, and consent.
The lessons have been used all over Montana. During the 2016-2017 school year, 45 percent of Montana counties (25 out of 56 counties) used Power Up, Speak Out! to teach their students about healthy peer relationships. Since the program’s inception in 2012, over 27,000 youth in Montana have been reached.
DSVS is proud of this state-wide program. And they’re excited to let the community know that the program just keeps growing.
Due to requests outside the state, DSVS launched a nonprofit business over the summer. Power Up, Speak Out! lessons are now available for purchase both inside and outside of Montana. During October, Beth Hoover, Violence Prevention Educator and Program Manager, was a presenter at school counselor conferences in Idaho and Colorado, spreading healthy peer relationship skills the Montana way.
In addition, DSVS has been supporting more activities with the local community to spread healthy peer relationships all over Carbon County. Travis Burdick, Lead Educator, is involved with local school assemblies, the high school health class, the Boys & Girls Club, and runs a youth mentoring program. DSVS is currently supporting 27 students at a weekly mentoring program with students in grades elementary through high school.
If you’re interested in learning more about the program, visit the website, www.powerupspeakout.org. There, you’ll find free resources for anyone. Subscribers to the e-newsletter receive monthly ideas from the Power Up, Speak Out! Blog. In particular, you should listen to Power Up Radio, a new podcast found on the blog. Episodes are appropriate for middle school ages and above, and could be used as discussion starters by educators, parents, or anyone! Topics covered so far are Frenemies, Social Media Drama, Breaking Up, and What to do if You’re Having a Hard Time.

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Upcoming Events

  • Tuesday, April 23, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, April 25, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.
  • Thursday, April 25, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Friday, April 26, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Rock Creek Group meets Tuesdays and Saturdays at 8 a.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 p.m. at Calvary Church, 9 N Villard, Red Lodge.
  • Saturday, April 27, 2019 - 6:00pm
    The Carbon County Republican Lincoln Reagan Dinner is April 27 starting at 6 p.m. Social Hour, Beef Dinner at 7 p. m. at the Joliet Community Cente. Silent auction, pie auction, live auction of gun. Contact: Ed at 606-2159 and Cynthia at 425-1226.
  • Monday, April 29, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.

The Carbon County News

Street Address:

11 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 970, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Phone: 406-446-2222

Fax: 406-446-2225

Toll-Free: 800-735-8843

Open: Monday-Friday, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.