Give Back Tahoe: Tahoe SAFE Alliance seeks violence-free future | SierraSun.com

Give Back Tahoe: Tahoe SAFE Alliance seeks violence-free future

Natasha Von Kaenel
Special to the Sun

Ariana and Jessenia Urena.

The best way to eradicate violence is to stop it before it can ever happen. That is the goal of Tahoe SAFE Alliance's Prevention and Education programs, held at almost every school in the North Lake Tahoe and Truckee region.

Each year, Tahoe SAFE Alliance staff and volunteers engage with students of all ages about different types of violent and abusive behavior and teach them ways to stay safe.

Tahoe SAFE Alliance offers age-appropriate lessons for students when they are the most capable of understanding the material.

While teens like Jessenia Urena, Co-Facilitator of the Teen Peace Project at Truckee High School, learn specific self-defense techniques, younger students learn to recognize and avoid dangerous situations and how to go to trusted adults for help.

When Jessenia was a sophomore at Truckee High School she joined the Teen Peace Project, a school club that is facilitated by Tahoe SAFE Alliance staff and volunteers to increase awareness around violence prevention.

The project organizes events both at their school and throughout the community.

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During a prevention event on Mother's Day, youth and adults painted together and learned about building healthy parental relationships. Teen Peace Project is also organizing a clothing swap and a number of educational movie nights.

Teaching children to recognize the early signs of abuse and violence is one of the most effective ways to prevent unhealthy behavior in their peers, families and in themselves.

Tahoe SAFE Alliance provides annual Violence Prevention Education in the classrooms to students of all ages.

The nonprofit leads Youth Empowerment and Leadership groups encouraging participating students to become active leaders in their schools and communities, dedicated to stopping violence in all its forms.

Support from donors and volunteers is crucial to continue providing these services. To donate or volunteer, go to http://www.tahoesafealliance.org or call 775-298-0010.