The newest addition to Variety's core programs, the Variety Being You Being Strong Initiative supports mental health awareness for children. Variety is pleased to fund this important programming for children in grades 3-5 in partnership with Alliance of Coalitions for Healthy Communities.
With increased stress and mental health challenges of students prior to and during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Alliance of Coalitions for Healthy Communities developed ReNEWed, Jr., an evidence-based, comprehensive youth skills training program targeting elementary students dealing with stress and anxiety. Instructors reach the practice of mindfulness, breathing exercises, how to identify emotions, mindful coping, how to recognize healthy versus unhealthy relationships and social media mindfulness.
The program can be implemented during the school day, in after-school settings and in any youth-centered group or club. It can also be implemented both in-person and virtually.
ReNEWed Jr. consists of four interactive lessons with ice breakers, question and answer sessions, games and movement to keep students engaged.
Lesson one teaches students how to identify difficult emotions and the importance of acknowledging them. Lesson two introduces the importance of healthy coping skills and how to handle difficult feelings and emotions. Lessons three and four help students identify healthy vs. unhealthy relationships. Instructors also teach students how to use social media in a mindful way.
After each lesson, a survey is given to evaluate the lesson's effectiveness and whether students will utilize the tools learned.
Oakland County schools wishing to participate in the program should contact the Alliance at 248.221.7101 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Variety Being You Being Strong Initiative was made possible by generous seed funding from The Michael Berman Fund, Jillian and Ed Lee, and Michele and Nathan Mersereau.