FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Aug 16, 2013
CONTACT Lauren Brisbo
415.678.5619

Coaches From Five Local High Schools Learn How To ‘Coach Boys Into Men’

San Francisco Unified School District Participates in Pilot Program to Engage Athletes in Violence Prevention

San Francisco (August 16, 2013) – Coaches from five San Francisco high schools will receive tools and resources to help them build strong teams and teach their athletes that violence never equals strength through Coaching Boys into Men, an international program created by San Francisco-based nonprofit Futures Without Violence.

Futures Without Violence is partnering with the San Francisco Unified School District to promote healthy relationships and reduce abusive behavior among high school athletes and their peers. The collaboration launched this week with an intensive, day-long leadership training session for coaches from Balboa High School, Mission High School, George Washington High School, June Jordan School for Equity and International Studies Academy.

Once the coaches are trained, they will roll out a 12-week curriculum during which they will teach their young athletes the importance of respect and nonviolence among themselves and their peers, and that rape is wrong and a criminal act. The district plans to use its experience during the pilot program to expand Coaching Boys into Men to other schools.

“Education is essential for fostering respect and preventing another tragedy like we the one we saw in Steubenville, Ohio, just a year ago,” said Futures Without Violence Founder and President Esta Soler. “We commend our school district for its unwavering commitment to preventing sexual violence among students."

“We want our athletes to be a part of the solution when they see or hear something that is harmful and wrong,” said Assistant Superintendent of San Francisco Unified School District Kevin Truitt, “Coaching Boys into Men not only teaches our players how to conduct themselves in their own relationships, it empowers them as leaders to take action when they see others acting out of line.”

For more than a decade, Futures Without Violence and its Coaching Boys into Men program have partnered with communities across the U.S. and around the world. From Sacramento and Dallas to India and South Africa, the program’s messages have proven universal. This San Francisco pilot and many like it are made possible by funding from the Waitt Institute for Violence Prevention, the Louis R. Lurie Foundation and the Verizon Foundation.

“For years Verizon has been a champion of ending domestic violence, and education efforts such as Coaching Boys into Men are powerful tools to teach young people about the importance of respect, nonviolence, and safety,” said Verizon Wireless Region President Russ Preite. A recent study funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention demonstrates the effectiveness of Coaching Boys into Men.

The three-year-long study evaluated over 2,000 athletes in sixteen Sacramento-area high schools and found that youth who participated in Coaching Boys into Men were less likely to support peers’ abusive behaviors and showed a reduction in abuse perpetration. The findings were published in the Journal of Adolescent Health (April 2012) and the American Journal of Preventive Medicine (July 2013).

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About Futures Without Violence 
FuturesWithout Violence (formerly Family Violence Prevention Fund), works to advance the health, stability, education, and security of women and girls, and men and boys worldwide. Through public education campaigns, legislative initiatives, and professional trainings, Futures Without Violence has helped to transform how hospitals, the criminal justice system, and policymakers deal with domestic and dating violence and sexual assault. Among its accomplishments, Futures Without Violence was instrumental in developing the landmark Violence Against Women Act passed by the U.S. Congress in 1994 and recently established an international center in the Presidio of San Francisco to promote an end to gender-based violence and child abuse. To learn more, visit www.futureswithoutviolence.org.