On October 25, 2011, New York Giants Safety Deon Grant and Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) Commissioner Jeanne B. Mullgrav stopped by the Ingersoll Community Center in Brooklyn for the Oath Project, an event produced in partnership with the DYCD, the Grant D. Knowledge Foundation, and the YWCA and Saving Our Daughters. The event focused on an anti-bullying education and prevention program designed to give young people a course of positive action when they encounter bullying.
Brooklyn, NY – Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) Commissioner Jeanne B. Mullgrav and the New York Giant's Safety Deon Grant today took part in an anti-bullying event at the Ingersoll Community Center in Fort Greene. Part of DYCD's Cornerstone Initiative, Ingersoll Community Center is administered by University Settlement Society of New York and offers programs for young people and adults that promote both education and wellness. Today's event – a partnership between DYCD, the Grant D. Knowledge Foundation, the YWCA and Saving Our Daughters – is called the Oath Project and centers on an anti-bullying education and prevention program that is designed to give young people a course of positive action when they encounter bullying.
"We know that teaching youth how to prevent bullying and giving them tools to take action do have a positive impact, even over a relatively short time," said Commissioner Jeanne B. Mullgrav. "That's why when we launched the Cornerstone Initiative we adopted a curriculum that educates young people on what to do when they see a peer being bullied and how to stop it. No young person should feel helpless in the face of a bully, and with the help of Dean Grant and the Oath Project, we're taking that message directly to our youth."
"I am proud to support the national campaign increasing awareness of the presence and impact of bullying and violence," said Deon Grant, Safety for the New York Giants. "With increased awareness, many students and adults are no longer put in a position to ignore its silent impact. By taking the Oath, students are encouraged to engage in a proactive role in prevention. This engagement falls in line with the mission and goals of my foundation."
"We are delighted to welcome Deon Grant and his anti-bullying message to the Ingersoll Community Center," said Tameeka Ford Norville, director of after-school programs at University Settlement. "As a Cornerstone Community Center, one of our goals is to be a safe and welcoming resource to families in the surrounding Fort Greene neighborhood and to give children a supportive place to learn and grow into strong leaders of tomorrow. Mr. Grant's visit today helps reinforce the importance of safety, respect and mutual understanding in order to thrive as a community."
In April 2010, Deon Grant signed with the New York Giants where he continues to perform as a veteran Free Safety offering leadership on and off the field to his peers. Through his Grant D. Knowledge Foundation, Deon is now lending support to a youth bullying and abuse prevention movement. He was inspired to help fund a major project of Saving Our Daughters' Power of Words & Actions Initiative engaging 50,000 teens and 250,000 adults. The Oath Project is part of an online platform that connects a massive community of well-
informed and responsive youth and adults ready to make bullying an issue of the past by taking 8 steps of immediate action to prevent bullying in their lives and around the world.
Mr. Grant and Commissioner Mullgrav led young people from the center's afterschool program through the oath, the text of which reads:
- I will surround myself with people and activities that are civilly and socially appropriate
- If I feel I am being harassed, excluded, or harmed in any way, I will immediately get the help of a school counselor, parent(s)/guardian(s), an adult member of my faith organization, or any trusted adult
- I will learn about my civil rights and liberties
- I will find out my state's anti-bullying and harassment guidelines –or— I will tell leaders in my state that youth need anti-bullying and harassment guidelines
- I will help spread the word about this oath
- I will consider joining or starting an effort to mobilize a group of friends, family, neighbors, to do at least one great action solution
- I will help my school create a civility pledge and policy (with an adult advisor)
- I will learn the right actions to take in case I become a witness or bystander of bullying, harassment or threats.
Announced by Mayor Bloomberg in 2009, Cornerstone Community Centers provide engaging activities year-round for young people and adults. Programs are located at 25 NYCHA Community Centers in all five boroughs. Youth programs are designed to help participants acquire the skills and attitudes they need to graduate from high school, succeed in their chosen career, and give back to the community. Adult programs are designed to enhance skills and promote social interaction, community engagement, and physical activity.
DYCD supports New York City's afterschool and youth workforce development programs throughout the five boroughs. The agency also oversees funding for anti-poverty programs, such as adult literacy and immigrant services. For more information, please go to www.nyc.gov/dycd or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.