‘The ROSE Fund 500’

A race to break the silence and the cycle of domestic and teen dating violence across New England.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 1, 2010: Boston, Ma.-

 

Today the ROSE Fund officially launched the ROSE Fund 500 (RF 500). In their estimation, an important race to break the silence and the cycle of domestic violence (DV) and teen dating violence (TDV) across New England. A key component of their plan is to convince you to get well trained on the issue, join the race and become an active part of the overall solution. This August 1st launch kicks off their quest to convince 500 concerned citizens to formalize their relationship with The ROSE Fund. Essentially, they’re encouraging individuals to join in ROSE’s mission to swiftly and profoundly increase DV/TDV education, intervention and prevention within their own home town. They’re looking for dedicated individuals to join this grass roots effort to transform New England, and each and every high school and community in it, from ‘Unaware and Unprepared’ to “Informed and Effective’ in understanding and addressing the issues of domestic and teen dating violence.

 For more than a year now, ROSE has been developing and perfecting a product (the ROSE Report Card) and a plan that they believe will allow them to Transform High Schools, Colleges and Communities across the region from ‘Unaware and Unprepared’ to “Informed and Effective’ . Phase One of their plan involves transforming high schools where, statistically, teen dating violence represents one of the most serious health issues facing students today. When speaking with Dan Walsh, Chairman and Executive Director of ROSE, about their plan and the launch of the RF 500 he shared, “We’re pleased to announce that the ROSE Report Card program and product are working. We’re really excited about the results so far in terms of the success we’ve had in rapidly driving change at the high school level. We’ve been incredibly encouraged by the response we’ve received from both concerned citizens and the high school principals we’ve approached”

Currently they have a dozen schools in New England committed to participate in the program, however their focus to date has been more on product development and testing, not on promotions. The launch of the RF 500 marks the first big push in terms of promoting this program. When asked about the program Walsh continued, “We’re working closely with the leadership teams at these high schools in helping them to better understand the prevalence and the severity of the TDV issue within their particular high schools. As a result of this approach we’ve been able to dramatically increase their commitment to the cause and accelerate the pace at which they implement effective TDV policies and programs. The importance of the RF 500 is that it will allow us to dramatically scale the program across the region. The product from day one was designed and built to scale. Now that we have proof that it works, we need concerned citizens everywhere to join the cause, leverage their personal network, and help us to bring this solution into their local high schools and communities.”

Teen dating violence is a cause that should warrant more attention than just a few sensational Hollywood stories and some episodic headlines. According to a Harvard University study, 1 in 5 girls in Massachusetts public high schools will be a victim of teen dating violence and abuse. Perhaps more disturbingly, is that the study further concluded that those girls that have been the targets and victims of this abuse were 6-9 times as likely to attempt or commit suicide, and 9 times as likely to abuse substances. The other unique element of this particular issue is the degree to which it is under  reported. The U.S. Department of Justice estimates that this issue is under reported anywhere from 65-95%.

When pressed to provide more specific details about the ROSE approach Walsh explained, ” really a very simple and basic plan. High school principals and health teachers have a really challenging and important role in determining how to strike the right balance between all of the competing health and wellness issues teenagers are faced  with today (i.e. bullying, substance abuse). Our attempt is to inform their decisions with local data to make sure that the teen dating violence issue is given the appropriate level of attention. To us it’s all about the local data. There are an overwhelming number of studies out there about just how bad TDV is across the country, the region and the state. However, because this issue thrives in silence, there is a well-established NIMBY myth (Not In My Backyard) that exists.

So most people, parents and principals amongst them, believe that these startling studies and statistics don’t apply to their local high school and community. Understandably, they tend not to have much in place in terms of TDV policies and programs (i.e. education and awareness). Our approach is to fully expose this issue by ‘localizing’ it. We go into the high schools and administer a simple and anonymous survey that plays a critical role in driving change. The survey breaks the silence that tends to be the source of why most high schools and communities don’t think they have an issue. Thus far it has been a powerful approach in increasing understanding and commitment around TDV. The best news is that there really are a great number of tremendously effective policies and prevention programs that already exist. We’re just trying to get folks to understand that, in many cases, they would greatly benefit from them…”

When asked about the future plans of the Report Card Program Walsh continued, “We believe that this issue is where the breast cancer issue was 25 years ago. There are a lot of parallels between the two issues, and to us that is a source of inspiration. Now that we’ve been in the field and have seen the success of the Report Card product and approach we’re even more convinced we can put the boots to this issue. It’s going to be fun and exciting for those that decide to join us. There’s nothing like bringing about big positive change to your own home town. We’re fired up about the opportunity to make a big difference in the safety and self-esteem of so many students. This really is an amazing  opportunity for all of us, and we look forward to growing our ranks of committed citizens in order to further fulfill our mission.”

Formalize your relationship with ROSE by joining the ROSE Fund 500

We need your help to transform your local high school and community.

There are four levels of participation in the ROSE Fund 500 ranging from Associate to Ambassador (see below). The basic commitment is to further understand both the DV/TDV issue and the ROSE Fund’s approach in solving it. It then involves spreading the word to others by reaching out to those in your network that you believe would be sympathetic and supportive to the cause. The ultimate goal is to broker a meeting with a high school principal so we can help them to answer 3 basic questions:

  • To what extent is teen dating violence and abuse (TDVA) an issue for your students?
  • How well prepared, in terms of policies and programs, is your school to effectively address this issue?
  •  If the prevalence of teen dating violence is higher than it should be, and the school is not as prepared as it could be, what measures could be taken to better address it?
Level # of email addresses provided for our mailing list Becoming More Educated and Aware of the Issue and Our plans to effectively address it Increasing the Education and Awareness of  other folks potentially sympathetic or supportive to our cause Promoting our cause by securing meetings/con calls with Principals/ Local High Schools
Ambassador 25+ Attend a 30 minute webinar Host a webinar for 10+ people Secure a meeting w the principal

at your local high school and participate in the Report Card Process

Activist 20+ Attend a 30 minute webinar Host a Webinar of 7-10 people Secure a meeting with the principal at your local high school
Advocate 15+ Attend a 30 minute Webinar Host a Webinar of  3-5+ people  

Secure a conference call with the principal at the local high school

Associate 10+ Attend a  30 minute Webinar    
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