Discussions with middle school students revealed that students are struggling every day with issues such as bullying, harassment, negative peer pressure and social insecurities. In the fall of 2005, Moriches Community Center’s Co-Executive Director Anthony Parlato and Treasurer Lisa Sanders began a Peer Leadership Program with the goal of guiding a team of middle school age students who exhibit leadership qualities and empowering them to create a more positive school climate.
Approximately 20 students in grades 6-8 meet Thursdays at 7:30pm under the guidance of facilitators Lisa Sanders and Sonny Saguto. The students discuss issues facing them and their peers, such as bullying, substance use and negative peer pressure, and they brainstorm ways to create a more safe, welcoming and respectful school climate and a positive peer culture. The facilitators stress confidentiality, guide them in role playing and discussions, and offer advise regarding seeking help from school staff and others for specific issues. Named “Kids in Control”, they also play an important role in raising funds for our “Santa’s Workshop” Holiday Outreach Program.
For more information, email us at gro.r1534631901etnec1534631901ytinu1534631901mmocs1534631901ehcir1534631901om@of1534631901ni1534631901
Peer Leadership is funded by a grant from Brookhaven Youth Bureau and by local fundraising.