Anti-Bullying Music Video is a Hit

Two high school students in Bradenton, Fla. recently came up with a great way to spread the message to “Stop the Bullying.” And they a won a contest to boot. Christian Alvarez and Nakell Kelly’s video “Teenage Survivor” won the grand prize in Maple Leaf Communications’ Teenage Survival Vids4Kids Contest. The song features some superb lyrics and a catchy beat. It’s truly worth a listen.

The students are part of a group called the SOZO Drug Free Teens, which was founded by Dwayne Parker, and is comprised of middle school and high school students in Bradenton. They spread the message of staying drug free and bully free through rap singing, dancing and drama.

“Our Mission is to have a noticeable impact in Manatee County, the state of Florida, and throughout the United states to reduce bullying, substance abuse and tobacco use by addressing risk and protective factors, especially among youth,” says Parker.

For more on CHARACTER COUNTS! anti-bullying workshops, visit here.

Working together is quite a trip

Dave KinnoinIn his song “Citizenship,” Dave Kinnoin sings, “Working together is quite a trip / It’s fun and meaningful and totally hip.

We totally agree.

You may know Dave, our favorite singer-songwriter, for his award-winning CD CHARACTER COUNTS! Strikes a Chord and the National CC! Week anthem. On Sunday, he was featured in the South Pasadena Patch for his dedication to volunteer work.

When he’s not making music, Dave uses his other skills to practice caring and citizenship. With the One Small House organization, he makes tables and helps build houses for impoverished families in Mexico. He works with at-risk and special needs kids through the Jeffrey Foundation, and his company Song Wizard Records helped fund a comic book by The Kids of Widney High, a music group made up of developmentally disabled adults. Kinnoin also makes and serves the occasional meatloaf at the Ronald McDonald House.

Dave in Mexico
On November 26, Dave and director Alejandra finalized the painting plans for a new Community Health Center in Mexico.

Even when he’s making music, Dave does so to serve others, contributing songs to the “Comfort for Court Kds” program, and writing and recording personalized songs for seriously ill children through the Songs of Love Foundation.

Dave also spoke to the Patch about his work with the Josephson Institute and CHARACTER COUNTS!. He said, “I’m not going to live forever… I want to leave knowing that I did something to make things better.”

He’s definitely done that, and we hope he keeps making things better for a long time to come.

* Read the story about Dave in the South Pasadena Patch.

* Check out Dave’s 2010 Parent’s Choice Award-winning CD CHARACTER COUNTS! Strikes a Chord.