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(Image courtesy of the Buffalo Sabres)
(Image courtesy of the Buffalo Sabres)

Buffalo Sabres join RISE to bring 'Diversity Foundations' program to Western New York high schools


Wed, Feb 24th 2021 04:05 pm

The Buffalo Sabres announced the team will bring the Diversity Foundations for High School program to local schools through a partnership with national nonprofit RISE and EVERFI. The program will be made available free of charge to all high schools in Western New York.

Diversity Foundations for High School introduces students to key concepts of identity, bias, power, privilege and oppression while establishing the importance of ally behavior, self-care and creating inclusive spaces. The content of the program is delivered through five 10- to 15-minute digital online lessons suitable for students grades nine through 12. The lessons are designed to be incorporated into curriculums in advisory, senior seminar, social studies, and English and language arts classes.

“The Buffalo Sabres are proud to partner with RISE and EVERFI to bring this critical program to our community,” said Rich Jureller, the Sabres’ vice president of community relations. “Now more than ever it is important for us to amplify programs such as this as a first step to necessary learning and understanding in the sports community and beyond.”

The EVERFI course includes resources from RISE, a nonprofit that educates and empowers the sports community to be leaders for eliminating racial discrimination, championing social justice and improving race relations.

“History has shown that sports can inspire a movement and make real change, and now it is the time again to use that power to unify our country to end racism,” said RISE CEO Diahann Billings-Burford. “At RISE, we are equipping the sports community and youth leaders with the tools to be advocates for racial equity. We’ve seen how partners like the Sabres, who are committed to action, can amplify this work by bringing diverse communities together to achieve long-term impact. It is clear the Sabres are dedicated to taking meaningful steps that bring sustained change, and we’re excited and proud to partner with them.”

“The national conversation on racial justice and equity is driving the most powerful demands for action, accountability and change that we’ve seen in a generation," said Jesse Bridges, EVERFI senior vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion. "We're working with RISE to create a digital learning experience that teaches the critical life skills of valuing diversity, collaborating across differences and being an ally. By amplifying their critical conversations on social justice, removing the cost barriers for educators and students, and doing so at scale; we’re able to empower this generation with the information and skills to be a part of this moment and movement toward a more equitable society.”

Enrollment is now open and educators can visit everfi.com/k-12/teachers to sign up free of charge. More information is available at risetowin.org.

RISE is a national nonprofit that educates and empowers the sports community to eliminate racial discrimination, champion social justice and improve race relations. Through partnerships and programs, RISE inspires leaders in sports to create positive change on matters of race and equality. RISE programs build skills and create safe spaces to have difficult conversations. RISE equips students, athletes, coaches and administrators with the tools to be culturally competent, effective advocates for racial equity and leaders in addressing racism, prejudice, diversity and inclusion. RISE's vision is to create a nation unified through sports committed to racial equity and social justice.

EVERFI is an international technology company driving social change through education to address the most challenging issues affecting society ranging from financial wellness to prescription drug safety to workplace conduct and other critical topics. Founded in 2008, EVERFI is fueled by its “Software-as-a-Service” (SaaS) community engagement platform and has reached more than 41 million learners globally. In 2020, the company was recognized as one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies by Fast Company and was featured on Fortune Magazine’s Impact 20 list. Some of America’s leading CEOs and venture capital firms are EVERFI investors, including Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, Twitter founder Evan Williams, as well as Advance, Rethink Education, Rethink Impact, The Rise Fund, and TPG Growth. To learn more about EVERFI and how to #answerthecall, visit everfi.com.

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