Neighborhood Resilience Project Visits Woodland Hills To Launch Peer-To-Peer Mentorship Program

A selection of high school students were introduced to a new peer-to-peer mentorship program on Tuesday during an assembly held by the Neighborhood Resilience Project.

A selection of high school students were introduced to a new peer-to-peer mentorship program on Tuesday during an assembly held by the Neighborhood Resilience Project.

Founded by Rev. Paul Abernathy, the Neighborhood Resilience Project provides resources and support for communities regularly affected by trauma. The group is launching a new peer-to-peer mentorship program that emphasizes leadership development and community healing. Woodland Hills is one of three schools that will be involved in the new program. 

Rev. Paul Abernathy and Steelers running back Trey Edmunds speak to Woodland Hills students on Tuesday, Nov. 9

To introduce students to the program, the Neighborhood Resilience Project invited Steelers running back Trey Edmunds to speak to the students. Edmunds promised at the outset that he would be real with the students and he opened up about his own experiences. He also relayed advice to them, particularly when it comes to making the right decisions. It takes just one second to make a mistake, Edmunds said.

Steelers running back Trey Edmunds speaks to Woodland Hills High School students during a Neighborhood Resilience Project assembly on November 9

Edmunds pointed to recent real life situations from the NFL where poor decisions not only impacted the careers of pro football players but, in one case, cost an innocent person her life. Hard choices are everywhere, but the students have the power to make a transformative positive choice right now.

“You can be the difference in your family," Edmunds said. "You can make a decision today that sets you and your family for the rest of your lives.”

He also emphasized the importance of reaching out for help.

"It's OK to not be OK," Edmunds assured the students.

Steelers running back Trey Edmunds speaks to Woodland Hills High School students during a Neighborhood Resilience Project assembly on November 9

Students in the program from the Neighborhood Resilience Project will learn both high-level concepts and practical skills. Eight students from each lunch period - 24 students in all - will learn from a curriculum that teaches students how to recognize and handle the emotions related to trauma, learn about conflict resolution, learn how to build resilience, learn how to organize community listening sessions, and more. 

Those students will then utilize those tools to become mentors in the second year of the program and help their classmates acquire the same toolkit. 

For those interested in learning more about the Neighborhood Resilience Project, Rev. Paul Abernathy will be presenting during the Nov. 10 school board agenda setting meeting. 

A selection of high school students were introduced to a new peer-to-peer mentorship program on Tuesday during an assembly held by the Neighborhood Resilience Project.





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