3 teens in the foreground, and one blurred out in the background, are sitting at a table in a restaurant. One teen who has braces on his teeth, is holding a phone out to take a selfie of himself and the other teens. They are all smiling and look very happy.

"Strong people stand for themselves. But the STRONGEST people stand up for others" -Unknown

CONSENT

Consent

"No." Does Not Mean "Convince Me"
- Unknown

We consent to things daily! In fact, a recent survey showed the average adult makes over 35,000 decisions/day. We are actually experts in consent and decision-making. However when it comes to sex and intimacy, we tend to believe it’s confusing and unclear and “gray.” Consent at its core is when everyone involved freely and willingly agree to participate – when all involved are in harmony. For more information, including ages of consent per state, and more details about consent, when consent is given, not given, and how to ensure you have consent, please see the resources below, and our definition of consent here.

HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS

Healthy relationships, whether with family, friends, or a dating partner, are central to our happiness. Knowing which relationships to nurture and which relationships to let go of is a crucial life skill. A healthy relationship is encouraging, loving, supportive, and built on trust and equity. Check out the resources below to learn about what healthy and unhealthy relationships look like, and how to be a loving friend and partner. 

Healthy Relationships

“Love in such a way that the person you love feels free.” - Thích Nhất Hạnh, Vietnamese global spiritual leader, poet and peace activist.

SOCIAL MEDIA

Social Media

Before you text, type or speak, THINK first. 
Is it True? Is it Helpful? Is it Inspiring?
I
s it Necessary? Is it Kind? 

We consent to things daily! In fact, a recent survey showed the average adult makes over 35,000 decisions/day. We are actually experts in consent and decision-making. However when it comes to sex and intimacy, we tend to believe it’s confusing and unclear and “gray.” Consent at its core is when everyone involved freely and willingly agree to participate – when all involved are in harmony. For more information, including ages of consent per state, and more details about consent, when consent is given, not given, and how to ensure you have consent, please see the resources below, and our definition of consent here.

MEN & BOYS

When we talk about sexual violence, it is girls and women who most often come to mind. However sexual violence is a crime of power and control that can happen to, and be perpetrated by, anyone. 1 in 6 men have been sexually abused or assaulted, and 91-99% of sex offenders are men. To end sexual violence, boys and men must take the lead in redefining masculinity, uplifting gender equity, and holding other boys and men accountable for sexist jokes and sexually, physically, and emotionally abusive behaviors towards their dating partners. In a world where toxic masculinity is praised and encouraged, being an advocate for ending sexual violence can be challenging.  We need you, because as Tony Porter states “If women could end violence against women and girls by themselves, they would have done it already.”

Men & Boys

"Once men realize that gender roles are a prison for them too, they become really valuable allies. Because they're not just helping someone else, they're freeing themselves."
-Gloria Steinem, American feminist journalist and social political activist and Co-Founder of Ms. magazine

SPEAKING UP & OUT

Speaking Up & Out

"What you allow, is what will continue."
-Unknown

"The world suffers a lot. Not because of the violence of bad people, but because of the silence of good people." - Napoleon Bonaparte, French statesmen and military leader

Sexual violence prevention means stopping the behavior before it ever starts. In other words, preventing people from assaulting others in the first place. An active bystander is someone who is able to identify offensive comments and behaviors and safely interrupt the behavior in order to decrease the likelihood of a dangerous or harmful situation. This can range from not laughing at a sexist joke, to calling someone out for committing sexual assault. Speaking up & out is a vital piece to preventing sexual assault. Knowing how to do it in a way that feels safe and effective however, can be difficult. 

GET INVOLVED

We cannot end sexual violence without leadership from todays youth. Your voice and your experiences and ideas are valued and necessary to provide both validation and support for survivors, and to dismantle rape culture which uplifts toxic masculinity, the oppression of women and girls, and victim-blaming. From awareness campaigns, to school clubs, and peer education, there are many opportunities for you to get involved. 

Get Involved

"I raise up my voice - not so I can shout but so that those without a voice can be heard."
-Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest Nobel Prize laureate

Resources for Teens Working with Teens to Prevent Sexual Violence

PDF

Author/Organization: George Mason University

Resource Type: PDF

Age: College, Middle School, High School

Topics: Community educators & leaders, coaches, consent, men as allies, prevention, school teachers, sexual violence/rape

Video

Author/Organization: Clinton Foundation

Resource Type: Video

Age: Middle School, High School

Topics: Community educators & leaders, activity, athletes, coaches, dating violence, men & boys, men as allies, prevention, school teachers, video

Website

Author/Organization: One Love

Resource Type: Website

Age: College, Middle School, High School

Topics: Community educators & leaders, boundaries, communication, healthy relationships, men and boys, men as allies, school teachers

Video

Author/Organization: Ted Talk

Resource Type: Video

Age: College, Middle School, High School

Topics: Community educators & leaders, activity, coaches, consent, men & boys, men as allies, school teachers, sexual violence/rape, video

Discussion Guide

Resource Type: Discussion Guide

Age: College, Middle School, High School

Topics: Cyber bullying, LGBTQ+, bullying, bystander, community educators, dating violence, male survivors, men & boys, men as allies, parents/guardians, prevention, school teachers, sexual violence/rape, statistics

Website

Author/Organization: Nevada Coalition to End Domestic & Sexual Violence

Resource Type: Website

Topics: PWD, community educators, domestic violence, parents/guardians, prevention, school teachers, sexual violence/rape

Website

Author/Organization: National Domestic Violence Hotline

Resource Type: Website

Topics: BIPOC, LGBTQ+, PWD, community educators, consent, domestic violence, laws, parents/guardians, school teachers, sexual violence/rape

PDF

Author/Organization: Able SC

Resource Type: PDF

Age: College, Elementary School, Middle School, High School

Topics: bystander, community educators, prevention, school teachers

Website

Author/Organization: South Carolina Legislature

Resource Type: Website

Age: College, Elementary School, Middle School, High School

Topics: coaches, community educators, laws, men as allies, parents/guardians, school teachers, sexual violence/rape

Website

Author/Organization: South Carolina Department of Social Services

Resource Type: Website

Age: Elementary School, Middle School, High School

Topics: coaches, community educators, laws, male survivors, mandated reporting, men as allies, school teachers

https://www.levelupforchange.org/category/adult/, https://www.levelupforchange.org/category/teen/