Healthy Relationships Program
Research shows that abuse in relationships often begins in adolescence and that 1 in 4 teens will experience violence in their relationships. 40% of teenage girls age 14-17 report knowing someone their age who has been hit or beaten by a boyfriend.
Since 1997, MAAV has worked with the Melrose Public Schools to implement a multi-session teen dating violence prevention program titled “Healthy Relationships” for 8th grade students. Led by MAAV staff with the support of teachers, the program is taught as part of Health classes during school. The purpose is to help young people learn to recognize and avoid abusive relationships, to become more aware of attitudes and actions that are part of healthy, respectful relationships, and to seek help if needed.
As part of the program, students view and discuss the movie “No One Would Tell,” participate in interactive activities, hear directly from a survivor of teen dating violence. Every student receives a folder of materials and a palm card of hotline numbers just for teens.
The play “Remote Control” produced by Deana’s Educational Theater is brought in to enhance the Healthy Relationships Program. The play dramatically reinforces the information from the program, including the early warning signs of abuse, how to safely end a relationship, and how to help a friend.