At Our VOICE, we want you to Own Who U R!
Own Who You Are is the media campaign for the Teen Tech Safety project of Our VOICE. Through the Teen Tech Safety program, Our VOICE addresses the problem of teen sexting, which includes youth digitally distributing sexually explicit photos and language.
According to a 2009 study by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 4% of teens between the ages of 12 and 17 have sent sexually explicit images of themselves to someone else via text message, and 15% have received such images. The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy reports that 20% of teens ages 13-19 have “sent/ posted nude or semi-nude pictures or video of themselves.” Also, 71% of teen girls and 67% of teen boys have shared these images with a boyfriend or girlfriend.
The statistics are startling, but only begin to point to the problem. Sexting and posting of sexually explicit photos online can have long-lasting effects and devastating impacts on all parties involved. It can impact a teen’s access to higher education and stable employment as it involves felony child pornography distribution. The Teen Tech Safety project is a prevention education program and it is our hope that we will decrease the likelihood that teens will be negatively impacted by what they text and/ or post on their social media sites.
At Our VOICE we want to reach as many teens in middle and high-school in Buncombe County as we can. That means approximately 13,862 students! Since the launch of the project in Fall of 2013, we have reached 2,615 students in Buncombe County Reaction to the project among educators in our community has been very positive. We also know that the program works: of the educated students we have surveyed, 93% have demonstrated an increased knowledge about the issue.
We’re hoping that the Teen Tech Safety project will have an even greater impact; to that end The Teen Tech Safety project has been developed into a curricula that can be purchased from Our VOICE for replication in other communities concerned about the dangers of teen sexting.
We are grateful to the Women for Women fund of the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina for funding the Teen Tech Safety project, and for helping us challenge you- and all teens- to Own Who You Are!
To purchase an Own Who U R Curriculum, use the Pay Pal link below. Pay Pal is safe and easy – you can use a Debit or Credit card through Pay Pal.