NEW YORK, NY – On June 18, Derek Jeter's Turn 2 Foundation announced a partnership with STOPit, an anti-cyberbullying platform for schools, aimed at ending cyber abuse and providing today's youth with the necessary tools to fight back. Livingston resident Jonathan Pearl is the COO of STOPit. Click here for TAP into Livingston’s recent article on STOPit.
Through the partnership, the Turn 2 Foundation will incorporate the STOPit platform into its full range of youth initiatives, giving students from elementary school through high school a means of preventing cyberbullying both in the classroom and at home. Students from the Jeter's Leaders program – Turn 2's signature initiative – will play a key role in the campaign by serving as ambassadors against bullying in their schools.
"The Turn 2 Foundation is dedicated to helping young people reach their full potential, and bullying is an obstacle that stands in the way of that for too many," said Jeter, who is also an investor in the company. "By working with STOPit, we hope to empower both bystanders and victims to put an end to bullying. This is a critical step in creating a clear path to academic and personal success for all students, and sends a message that bullying in any form is unacceptable."
"It is very exciting to work for a company that is partnering with the Turn 2 Foundation," said Jeff Mayerson, a 1985 LHS graduate, who heads up sales for STOPit. "Derek Jeter and the Turn 2 Foundation are all about helping kids. This is a great match."
Pearl said that bullying is just a part of human interaction—and has been for thousands of years. The difference now, he says, is that the ability to hurt someone is so magnified through social media that it can be absolutely devastating to a child.
In fact, it was the disturbing story of one of these devastated children that inspired CEO Todd Schobel to launch STOPit in Sept. 2014. In 2012, 15-year-old Amanda Todd produced an extensive YouTube video about how bullying had adversely affected her life—ultimately causing her to end it. Todd’s story motivated Schobel to take action and STOPit was born.
Launched in 2014, STOPit has jumpstarted a powerful transformation in school cultures by providing a cyberbullying deterrent. A technology platform available for download as an app, students can anonymously report incidents of cyber abuse with the click of a button on their smartphones. A report is then sent directly to STOPit's cloud-based incident management system, DOCUMENTit, which notifies school administrators in real time. Currently implemented in over 100 schools across the United States, STOPit recently expanded into Canada, Ireland, Italy, and South Africa, with plans for additional expansion efforts in 2015.
"Partnering with the Turn 2 Foundation is a wonderful opportunity for STOPit," said Schobel, president & CEO of STOPit. "Derek has always been a champion, both on and off the field. Through our partnership with the Turn 2 Foundation, we will continue to make a difference in schools across the country. STOPit is all about empowering today's youth to affect change and this partnership epitomizes our efforts."
"Putting a stop to bullying aligns perfectly with the mission of the Turn 2 Foundation, and is a key focus for the Jeter's Leaders, who are natural ambassadors for this issue," said Sharlee Jeter, president of the Turn 2 Foundation. "This platform will be a valuable tool for students in our programs, and I look forward to seeing what Turn 2 and STOPit are able to accomplish together."
Jeter's Leaders is an intensive four-year leadership development program for high school students who are role models in their communities. It is the signature program of Turn 2, an organization established in 1996 by former New York Yankees shortstop Jeter to motivate young people to turn away from drugs and alcohol and 'turn to' healthy lifestyles.
With the rise of social media and student technologies both inside and outside of the classroom, bullying now affects over half of adolescents and teens across the United States. Studies show alarming growth rates in the number of children affected by cyberbullying. According to the iSafe Foundation (2014), at least 52 percent of teens have been bullied online and 35 percent of children have been threatened while surfing the web.
The STOPit app is available for both Android and iOS. For additional info on how the platform helps end cyberbullying, visit StopItCyberBully.com.
The STOPit platform provides institutions with powerful tools to report and manage conflict and crisis. Students are equipped with a mobile app for fast, secure and anonymous reporting. Administrators are equipped with DOCUMENTit, a comprehensive, streamlined, cloud-based incident management system. This complete solution allows faculty and staff to offer guidance to their students and address issues before they spiral out of control. STOPit helps children feel safe and empowered at school, which fosters good digital citizenship and an overall sense of well-being amongst the entire community.
The Turn 2 Foundation
The Turn 2 Foundation, established in 1996, has awarded more than $20 million to create and support signature programs and activities that motivate young people to turn away from drugs and alcohol and "Turn 2" healthy lifestyles. Through these ventures, the Foundation strives to create outlets that promote and reward academic excellence, leadership development, and positive behavior. Turn 2's goal is to see the children of these programs grow safely and successfully into adulthood and become the leaders of tomorrow.