Strength Specific Campaigns Posted on September 5, 2017 by Sources of Strength Media Strength Specific Campaigns The possibilities for creating events and campaigns to raise awareness of strengths are endless! We are constantly impressed by the creativity and insight of Peer Leaders and Adult Advisors to come up with great ideas that can change their school’s culture for the better. Here are a few ideas in each category to help you get started: Family Support Make a Family Tree and write down the positive qualities or things you appreciate about each of the members of the tree that you named. This could be Peer Leader’s actual family members or their “chosen” family. Create a paper chain. On each link, write the name of someone in your family (the one you were born into, or the one that you chose) that you feel supported by. Pass out pieces of paper to everyone in the school, either in classrooms or the lunchroom and then add each piece to the paper chain. Display it in the school or community space. Use the hashtag #SOURCESOFSTRENGTH and have people post pics of their fam- whatever that looks like for them, and print them up as posters to hang around the school. Host an awkward family photo competition where students are invited to find a funny picture of their family (the one you were born into, or the one that you choose), and then to post that photo to social media (#sourcesofstrength), with a comment about how your family supports you. Positive Friends Challenge everyone in the school to meet 5 new friends and learn 2 truths and a lie about each of them. Host a school-wide kickball tournament. Each Peer Leader is a team captain, but you have to find 5 people you don’t know to participate as your teammates. Hold auditions for a lip-sync battle: all band names and songs have to be about friendship. Host a MOTH-style story slam, where Peer Leaders tell powerful stories of unexpected friendships. Invite the Literature/Language Arts Departments to get involved. Assign an essay about unlikely friendships, using novels, essays, and poems that tell stories of positive friendships that changed people’s lives. Mentors Host Dress Like your Mentor Day, then host a fashion show, voting on who captured the essence of their mentor the most. Mentor Madness Bracket: Have the student population submit list of mentors/trusted adults in the school and/or community. Help the Sources team rank them in a March Madness style bracket with fun activities, feats of strength, challenges during lunch or passing periods. Advance different mentors to the championship round and each year give out a trophy for the winning mentor. Throw a mentor’s parade and invite local mentors to the school to accompany high school leaders at the local middle or elementary schools. This can build community and celebrate the impact of mentors (6th grade reading buddies, coaches, YL leaders, etc.) Set up a speed-dating style Mentor event, where different adults in the community who have a desire and a capacity to mentor a student can meet them in a safe way, creating space for connection. Healthy Activities Set up a photo booth and have students bring in props to showcase what their healthy activities are. Do a Mannequin Challenge video down the halls of the school where everyone is frozen in the pose of their favorite healthy activity. Create an art contest for healthy activity submissions: photography, spoken word, painting, poetry, music, etc. Create partnerships with local organizations and have school-sponsored nights at bowling alleys, mini-golf courses, volleyball courts, waterparks, and amusement parks, etc. Have people post selfies to show how your school is tapping into their strengths. Set up different rooms in the school featuring the healthy activities preferred by students on the outsides of the social networks, not just the traditional (or more sporty) joiners. Rooms could include a video game room, board game room, Iron Chef-style cook-offs, instrument jamming room, etc. Generosity Start a Random Acts of Kindness campaign so that the domino effect is seen (or the tidal wave, or snowball effect), showing more and more kindness catching on. Host School Supply Drives, Winter Coat and Glove Drives, Food Drives, etc. as is seasonally appropriate. Set up a volunteer board next to the jobs board at the school. List opportunities for students to help others with homework, tutoring, yard work for the elderly, carpools for underclassmen, etc. Create a Get You Some Generosity wall display (could be renamed, Generous&See, Get Generous, Be Generous, Giving is Living, Share is Caring, etc…), where Peer Leaders write acts of Generosity on post-it notes so that other students can take a note off the wall and then go and participate in that act of generosity. This activity focused on inviting other students into acts of generosity. Spirituality Run a Thankfulness Challenge. Survey the entire student body about their top 20 things they are thankful for, then compile the list to highlight how many similarities there are among the students. Host an assembly where a diverse range of spiritual practices are showcased. This will require some prep to ensure that the event doesn’t function as an evangelistic tool of one set of beliefs or practices. Instead, highlight the beauty that each spiritual practice offers the person. Invite the Literature/Language Arts Departments to get involved. Assign an essay about rites of passage in various cultural and religious practices, then have the student body create a rite of passage for students as they move up a grade level or as they graduate. Draw a tree with branches moving out. Hand out colored paper in the shape of leaves and have students write down things that they are thankful for, posting them on the branches when they are finished. Create an art contest for spirituality submissions: use photography, spoken word, poetry, or music to complete the sentence, “I feel connected to something bigger than myself when I ________________.” Have each class start with a three minute mindfulness exercise, gratefulness challenge, or a breathing practice. Medical Access Host a panel of medical practitioners to talk about access to care during an assembly or in classroom presentations. Create a poster campaign of students with stereotypical physical injuries to make a connection between getting medical access, and using mental health resources, i.e., the hockey player with a blacked out tooth saying- “If I lost my tooth, I’d go to a dentist, and when I lost my way, I went to the school counselor.” Host a blood drive on campus or do an organ donor drive on campus. Mental Health Survey the student body to see what helps them manage their anxiety, then create opportunities for those stress-relievers to be on campus during finals week (yoga, dogs to pet, open gym, etc.) Create a de-stress space at the school, where students can hang out when they are wrestling with one of the Big Three Emotions – Anxiety, Anger, Depression. Host a viewing party of the movie Inside Out and have the Peer Leaders facilitate a Q&A about managing big emotions in response. Host a community night where students and their families could learn more about mental health resources in the area. Create a video contest for mental health submissions: use videos (imagery/scripts/songs) to tell a story of how Peer Leaders manage big emotions. Remember to keep it focused on Hope, Help, and Strength.