Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE) Youth Ambassadors Participating in CDC Violence Prevention Meeting, Washington, DC
DENVER (March 15, 2011) – Denver youth representatives, Gerardo Ceballos and Candy Gonzalez from Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE), will travel to Washington, DC, to participate in a two-day meeting on youth violence prevention together with U.S. government agencies and national organizations. The March 16-17 meeting, convened by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and their partners, will give local youth leaders an opportunity to share their insights for effectively engaging other youth around this issue.
Youth violence is a public health crisis. According to recent CDC statistics, 20 percent of high school students report being bullied at school, and more than 30 percent report having been in a physical fight. Almost 620,000 young people aged 10 to 24 were treated in emergency departments for injuries sustained from violence in 2009. Homicide is the second leading cause of death among young people, with an average of 16 youth murdered every day.
“Youth violence is a problem that can negatively affect kids at any age in any community, including here in Denver. Everyone has a responsibility to help prevent youth violence and the factors that contribute to it, and youth can play a key role in effectively reaching out to and educating our peers. We are very excited to have been invited to this important meeting to share our experiences and ideas,” said Candy Gonzalez with SAVE.
The gathering in Washington, DC is the first meeting of the CDC’s Striving to Reduce Youth Violence Everywhere (STRYVE) Partnership Network.
U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin will address attendees via videotaped remarks, and the Commissioner of the Administration on Children, Youth, and Families, Bryan Samuels, will also speak. More than 40 national and regional organizations, as well as representatives of the U.S. Departments of Justice, Education, and Housing and Urban Development, will participate in the meeting.
“Preventing youth violence before it starts requires a unified effort among organizations from multiple disciplines. Each of us has a unique role to play in our communities to keep children safe so that they can live to their full potential. The direct involvement of youth who can promote and participate in evidence-based programs that work is especially critical,” said Carleen Wray, Executive Director of the National Association of SAVE. “Youth leaders can be very effective ambassadors for violence prevention in their communities.”
Youth leaders attending the meeting, including those from SAVE, will lead a session entitled “Learning and Gaining from Youth Involvement”
More information about youth violence prevention and STRYVE can be found at www.SafeYouth.gov.
EDITORS NOTE: STRYVE partners include: Afterschool Alliance, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association of School Administrators, American Psychological Association, Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America, National Association of County and City Health Officials, National Association of Students Against Violence Everywhere, National Urban League, Prevention Institute, Safe States Alliance, Voices for America’s Children, and Youth Service America.
About the National Association of Students Against Violence Everywhere:
SAVE started at West Charlotte High School in Charlotte, N.C. in 1989 following the tragic death of a student who was trying to break up a fight at an off-campus party. Students met first to console each other, then as an organization to promote violence prevention and to work together to prevent future incidents from occurring. SAVE provides education about the effects and consequences of violence and helps provide safe activities for students, parents and communities. For more information on SAVE or starting a SAVE chapter, visit www.nationalsave.org, or contact SAVE at (866) 343-SAVE to receive free start-up materials and guidance.
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Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE), Inc. is a nonprofit organization striving to decrease violence in our schools and communities by promoting student involvement, education and service opportunities to provide safer environments for learning.