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Peer Challenge
Cape May County, NJ
Atlantic County, NJ
Cumberland County, NJ
Email: gopeerchallenge@gmail.com
Phone:
(609) 861-2351

 
 
 
Miss Cape Shores 2018 helps students Commit 2 Character
 
Alyssa Sullivan, Miss Cape Shores 2018, is on a mission to educate New Jersey teens about Peer Challenge: Commit2Character. Emphasizing the dangers of risky behavior, Alyssa speaks with students 5-­‐12 grade about being in the driver seat of their own destiny.
 
Alyssa Sullivan, Miss Cape Shores 2018, is on a continuous mission throughout the state of New Jersey to educate teens about her platform Peer Challenge Commit2Character. She wants to emphasize to them the dangers of risk taking behaviors and their ability to derail their futures. She speaks with student’s grades 5-­‐12 about how they can be in the drivers seat to their destiny and always lead a healthy lifestyle surrounded by positivity and people who raise them higher.
 
“Over 80 percent of teens use cells phone regularly, making it the most popular form of technology and a common medium for cyber bullying”. “Close to 34 percent of students acknowledge that they have experienced cyber bullying”. In addition, “15 percent of surveyed students admit to cyber bullying others”. Peer Pressure is at an all time high and activities such as underage drinking, drug usage and teen pregnancy are happening all too often. Teens need a positive influence and that’s where Alyssa comes in. After all, it wasn’t long ago that she was standing in their shoes. Often, students find it hard to say “no” or perhaps don’t realize the consequences of their actions. With Peer Challenge:
Commit2Character, Alyssa shares personal stories and examples to help kids see that the right “path” is the one they choose for themselves.
 
Alyssa’s in-­‐school presentations cover topics such as:
• How to avoid risk taking behaviors (drinking, drugs, teen pregnancy)
• How to stay on your own path despite peer pressure
• Bullying
• Social Media Dangers/ How to create a safe digital footprint
• We are human…we make mistakes….how to come back from them
 
Alyssa Sullivan is a 22 year old, born and raised in Cape May Court House, New Jersey. She currently resides in Glassboro where she is a sophomore at Rowan University studying Broadcast Journalism. A talented vocalist, dancer and actress, Alyssa has over 19 years experience in the performing arts. Additionally, she has devoted her life to being a philanthropist in her community. In 2017, she was humbled to receive a Joint Legislative Resolution from Senator Van Drew and have her hometown name February 23rd, Alyssa Sullivan day. In addition to her community service work she has passionately promoted her personal platform, Peer Challenge Commit2Character, to teens across the state.
 
About Miss Cape Shores and the Miss New Jersey Organization
 
The Miss Cape Shores pageant is an official preliminary to the Miss New Jersey pageant. The Miss New Jersey pageant is an official preliminary to the Miss America Pageant. Each local titleholder competes in the hopes to one day make it to the Miss America stage. The primary goal of the Miss America Organization at every level is to award young women scholarship in hopes to further their education. The organization teaches its contestants to use their voices and passions to make positive changes in their community. One of the highlights in a titleholder’s year at every level is her commitment and devotion to her personal platform. A primary goal of the Miss America Organization is not only to empower women, but also to show the American people the relevance of our organization at the local, state and national level.
 
Learn more about the Miss New Jersey Organization at missnewjersey.net and the Miss America Organization at missamerica.org
 
In an effort to curb teen pregnancy and STD rates, the state of New Jersey has granted federal Title V funding to programs that help youth postpone sexual activity and avoid other risk taking behaviors. Peer Challenge has been serving schools and youth since 1998 and has maintained a proven track record of success in reducing teen pregnancy and STD/STI rates with its interactive, multifaceted program designed to empower adolescents to live a healthy and focused lifestyle. Peer Challenge is free of charge and is available to the youth in Cape May and the surrounding counties of Atlantic, Burlington, Cumberland.
 
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In an effort to curb teen pregnancy and STD rates, the state of New Jersey has granted federal Title V funding to programs that help youth postpone sexual activity and avoid other risk taking behaviors. Peer Challenge has been serving schools and youth since 1998 and has maintained a proven track record of success in reducing teen pregnancy and STD/STI rates with its interactive, multifaceted program designed to empower adolescents to live a healthy and focused lifestyle. Peer Challenge is free of charge and is available to the youth in Cape May and the surrounding counties of Atlantic, Burlington, Cumberland.


The term “safe sex” is actually a myth. Broken hearts can  cause lifelong scars.  Unplanned pregnancies can ruin your dreams and force many teens to drop out of school and live on incomes below the poverty level. STI's cause pain, sterility, cancer, and death. Condoms provide far less protection than most people think offering only risky risk reduction. Don’t risk your life and your future on a piece of latex. The only "safe sex" is to "save" sex until marriage and remain faithful to your partner.


While the highly successful Peer Challenge assembly program, which uses powerful hands-on demonstrations to illustrate the benefits of delaying sexual activity and expose STD myths, is still available, Peer Challenge has evolved into a versatile 8 component program and schools and youth groups are invited to tailor a program to meet their schedules.


Classroom Instruction: The nationally acclaimed, YES YOU Can! curriculum provides medically accurate information and practical training promoting the postponement of sexual activity. It fulfills the New Jersey state mandated AIDS Prevention Act, meets the majority of the health core curriculum standards, and dovetails with many of the character education requirements. Lessons are replete with upbeat, enjoyable activities conveying helpful strategies for developing goals and establishing boundaries, understanding the influences of peers, media, alcohol/drugs on teen sexual activity, and discovering the benefits of personal responsibility and postponing sexual activity or returning to inactivity. Each lesson is designed to give student the important building blocks of character that lead to a healthy future through smart decision making. Parent message boards serve as a catalyst for family discussions.

Peer Challengers: Since studies indicate a strong correlation between the amount of contact hours with students and program success, students will have the opportunity to become Peer Challengers by participating in additional after-school sessions which reinforce the program objectives in an entertaining game format complete with refreshments. The after-school sessions provide an important venue for students to enjoy the encouragement and support of their peers and caring adults.

 

 

 

Peer Mentors: Studies indicate that young people are more likely to listen to and thus change attitudes and behaviors if they believe the person delivering the message is like them and deals with similar issues and concerns. Therefore, Peer Challengers are encouraged to become Peer Mentors and serve as credible sources of information and role models promoting positive pressure amongst their peers. All trained Peer Mentors assist the classroom teachers and youth group leaders, play an active role in the after-school clubs and community events, and contribute to the abstinence media campaign.

  

Parent Workshops: Parents should not buy into the myth that they lose their influence when their children enter adolescence. In fact, research shows that kids who avoid unhealthy risky behaviors have been greatly influenced by their parents. The "Let's Talk About Sex" parent workshops empower parents with practical help, encouragement and skills to keep their children safe in a world that bombards them with sex.

 

 

Teacher In-service: A two hour in-service with state continuing education credit, "Teen Sexual Health- A Whole School Approach" is provided to the school staff. The current landscape of teen sexuality is presented along with the resources enabling educators to have a dramatic impact on student health choices.

 

 

Community Collaboration: Peer Challenge has spent the past thirteen years combining talents and resources with other agencies to provide the youth of our community with the guidance and support enabling them to successfully transition into adulthood and a healthy, happy future with rewarding opportunities. Peer Challenge has taken every opportunity to promote the abstinence message through attendance at fairs, conferences, and youth events. Our TV and theater commercials have helped to promote the abstinence message to a media savvy audience. 

 

 


What Our Student Participants Are Saying

"I was absolutely impressed by this program. It was fun, but it also made me think about my choices. I had no idea about all of the diseases out there either. The hands-on demonstrations will stick out in my mind. It was awesome!!

"Then most valuable thing for me was learning the difference between love and infatuation. Now I know if a guy wants me just for sex, or if he's actually committed to me. Everything I've learned will help me make better choices and have a brighter future."

"Condoms don't always work. I thought they kept you safe, but instead they don't protect you from all STD's. You can still get HPV from skin to skin contact" and they don't protect your heart."

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