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Clean Start Challenge: Our Community Event

5503416358_6a787d544a_m.jpegI'm so excited to finally share the details from our Lifetime Moms Clean Start Challenge event to help boost self esteem in kids and educate parents about the dangers of bullying and cyber-bullying. Our event was a culmination of a 12 week program that I've embarked upon on behalf of Lifetime Moms and SC Johnson to help raise awareness to issues surrounding bullying while providing tips to parents and kids about how to boost self esteem.

Over the last three months, I've had the opportunity to interview incredible individuals - from authors, to parenting experts, to teen role models who are all making a difference by educating and inspiring children of all ages. Our event brought many of these individuals together for an evening where parents got the opportunity to have their questions answered by experts in the field of bullying prevention, while kids shared their own experiences while gaining important information about how they can become positive role models for one another.

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We started the evening with Taryn Grimes Herbert, who instantly got everyone in a great mood as she instructed everyone to close their eyes and imagine what their dream life would be. As I looked across the room, I could see people smiling as their thoughts drifted away to faraway places and then raising their hands as they all admitted that they'd love to see their dreams fulfilled. From there, former Miss Teen New Jersey and Love Our Children USA National Ambassador Krysten Moore shared her story of battling a weight problem as a child and how she's made it her personal mission to offer support and advice for kids. "Unstoppable in Stilettos" author and marketing guru Lauren Ruotolo wowed the crowd with her incredible childhood story of growing up with the rare degenerative bone disorder McCune Albright Syndrome, and Dr. Jeff Gardere and Love Our Children USA founder Ross Ellis gave the parents great advice on how to protect kids from bullying online and on the playground. Additionally, representatives from Center Lane shared their insights about their organization and how it helps to provide a safe environment and support system for LGBT teens. Plus, we featured two amazing young women from the New Rochelle High School performing arts program who read stories of kids who have been victimized by their peers.

By the end of the night, Rabbi Beth Nichols read some inspiring quotes from kids ages 7-12 and the parents who attended the event who shared what they learned. Take a look:

From the kids...
"Tonight reminded me that....Bullying is WRONG to infinity and beyond."
"Tonight reminded me that bullying is horrible and never should happen."
"Tonight reminded me that just a simple smile can change someone's life."
"Tonight reminded me that...Life can still be hopeful even if you are bullied. Life will always be awesome!"
"Tonight reminded me that there isn't a limit to my dreams. I should never tolerate bullying."

From the parents...
"Tonight reminds me that my most important job is to help shape my children into the adults they shall become, and to provide them with the tools necessary in their encounters with those who would stand in their way."
If you'd like to see the video from our event, visit the Lifetime Moms Clean Start Challenge page and make sure you vote for Team Beth as we support Love Our Children USA and Stomp Out Bullying.

Plus, take a look at our slideshow from the event (thanks to Jennifer Parente for your amazing work!)

I'd like to thank our amazing speakers, Temple Israel of New Rochelle, Rabbi Beth Nichols and Linda Barat from the Kulanu committee for their incredible support and insight. And I couldn't had done it without the moms in our community who helped spread the word and came out to help that night - Jill Plein, Amy Ecker, Danielle Feigenbaum and Robin Maccabbee - thank you from the bottom of my heart! Plus, thank you to all the parents and children who took time out of their schedules to attend this incredibly special night. To check out our video from the event, visit the Lifetime Moms Clean Start Challenge and make sure you vote for Team Beth as we support Love Our Children USA and Stomp Out Bullying. The winning team will win $10,000 for their charity and you can enter to win valuable prizes too!

Posted in: Blog, Clean Start Challenge on 03/25/2011

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