Ayanna Boykins, Education Project Director of ADL-CRC
The Anti-Defamation League’s annual PEW event was held on Sept. 22, at Temple Israel. This year marked the 30th anniversary of assembling high school students of different school districts, backgrounds, religions, ethnicities, races and cultures together for an intensive and interactive one-day, workshop. Nearly two hundred students representing nineteen schools attended the one-day conference empowering students to take a stand against bias in their schools and communities. Thirty-five volunteers including ADL board members, IHE staff members, educators, and community members contributed to making this day possible by carrying out programming in the small group discussions, helping with set up/tear down and to serve lunch.
To honor the thirtieth year of existence, ADL-CRC staff recognized Patricia Newman for her foresight to bring PEW to fruition, and making it a staple in the Omaha community for three decades. Also during the lunchtime ceremony, cast members of RESPECT presented a production of their play “Standing Up.”
A number of notable changes were also made for this year’s PEW programming. The biggest change was in the name. Since coming into existence, PEW has always stood for Prejudice Elimination Workshop. Now known as Promoting Empowerment in our World, PEW will emphasize the responsibility of student engagement and action to tackle prejudice, bullying and intergroup conflict in their schools and communities.
There was also a philosophical shift to trademark PEW as the kickoff for the year-long No Place For Hate® programming for each participating school. PEW has always been a stand-alone program component of the ADL-CRC. This year, we modified the program to better align with the national ADL No Place For Hate® campaign. This change ensures that student are putting their newly found knowledge from PEW to work by having authentic conversations about the current climate and culture of their school, and action planning school-wide strategies to address bias and bullying throughout that academic school year. Additionally, the ADL-CRC is shifting to host high school sophomores rather than juniors in order to create a more engaged cohort of students that will extend from a student’s tenth grade through twelfth grade years.
PEW is a free training for students and school staff made possible – thanks to the generous support of
The Murray H. and Sharee C. Newman Supporting Foundation and The Shirley and Leonard Goldstein Supporting Foundation.