Introducing Project REACH

Are kids today meaner, ruder and cruder than when you were a child?

I’m sure every generation has had the same complaint. However true that may be, there seems to be a true lack of kindness in school-age children now. Over the past several years we’ve seen high profile news stories of behavior that ranges from bullying to sexual harassment to the awful news of school shootings.

Just the other day, I was in the grocery store and watched a teenage boy openly defy his mother. She wanted him to put back whatever he wanted her to pay for, but he was adamant. He wasn’t putting it back. I walked away before seeing whether she caved and bought it for him, but his behavior spoke to a trend we all seem to see today.

What’s happened to turn our kids into demanding little monsters? I imagine there are several contributing factors. Perhaps we didn’t like the way our parents raised us.

My parents were rather strict, and had high expectations. When told to do something, I was expected to do it, without rolling my eyes, sighing heavily or talking back. Something needed to be done, and I needed to do it – end of story.

Now? Well, that’s not what we’re seeing in much of our culture.

Kids openly talk back, ridicule and even curse their parents. Gone are the days of respecting their elders. They mock, they disparage and they cry and kick and scream until they get their way. It’s a sad footnote to both the current generation and the older one that lets them get away with it.

So, what can be done? Can we reverse this trend of rude, crude and meanness?

I believe we can make an impact.

I’d like to tell you about Project REACH

Project REACH is a program that teaches kids of all ages that it’s cool to be kind and respectful.

The program consists of a Project REACH presenter talking straight to kids of all ages in a school assembly. Though the program is basically the same for all grades, the tone is a little gentler for those in elementary and middle schools, as they seem to be more open to learning and adopting practices of kindness and respect.

During the school assembly, the presenter involves the children and faculty in learning how small and simple acts of kindness, used every day, can become a habit. They will learn how these acts of kindness can make them feel good inside. They will also learn how to respond to the unkindness of others, using, of course, respect and kindness as tools.

How valuable is it to you that your child learns simple kindness and respect?

If you would like your child’s school to have Project REACH make a presentation to them, please call or email to let them know. They can contact me for information at (801) 835-9715 for information.

James Hofheins
Project REACH