Howard County School Board Vice Chairman Brian Meshkin and his wife, Catherine Meshkin, are excited to announce the second in a series of four “One-Howard County Family Nights” to take place on January 28, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. at Howard County Library System's East Columbia Branch located at 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia, MD 21045. The theme of this 2nd Family Night is: “Be an Upstander”, to bullying and other digital dangers. One-Howard-County continues to build awareness and inspire youth and adults alike to be “Upstanders” instead of just “Bystanders.” Building off of the last family night, local high school students will lead families in roll-playing games to develop the courage to be an Upstander instead of a Bystander to this destructive behavior.
“At our last event, parents, teens, and younger children really connected to the high school students who acted out the roles of a bully, victim, bystander, and upstander. It was a great way for families to understand and be inspired,” explained Catherine Meshkin. “All it takes is one person to stand up for what’s right in order to give others courage to do the right thing and protect those in danger.”
Additionally, Brian and Catherine will be joined by Tim Woda, national digital safety expert and co-founder of uKnow.com. uKnow.com is the developer of uKnowKids™, a Parental Intelligence system that helps make digital parenting easier and keeps kids safer for parents of social and mobile kids. Tim originally conceived of uKnow.com following his own child’s encounter with an Internet child predator. While his son was thankfully unharmed, the incident inspired Tim to become a passionate advocate for empowering families and helping them to protect their children from today’s scariest digital dangers. Tim will explain how uKnowKids™ works, provide literature on their service, and in collaboration with Brian and Catherine Meshkin, will offer a free access to uKnowKids™ for all participants in the January 28th One-Howard County Family Night.
“After the tremendous turn-out back in October and then our One-Howard-County night at the Broadway Musical Wicked at the Hippodrome in November, we are excited to kick-off 2013 with another Family Night with a free tool to empower parents to protect their kids,” states Brian Meshkin. “We are grateful for our partnership with Choose Civility and the opportunity we have to host these family nights at our amazing library facilities.”
Attendees at this Family Night in January will also receive an Upstander T-shirt designed by Upstander Alliance member and Reservoir High School Student Government President, Eric Higgins. Supplies are limited. Since the creation of this initiative, Brian and Catherine have joined with the Internet company Yahoo!, the National School Climate Center and others to launch their One-Howard-County program. The initiative is aimed at reducing cyberbullying and avoiding other digital dangers among youth and adults in the community. Unlike other programs that focus solely on youth bullying, One-Howard-County recognizes that adults can add to the problem, often setting poor examples for youth to follow.
During the 2012/2013 school year, four One-Howard-County Family Nights will be held where families can join together to learn more about these issues, listen to speakers, and reinforce concepts through games and hands-on activities. The first event was held in October 2012. The remaining schedule for the 2013 school year is as follows:
- January 28, 2013 at Howard County Library System's (HCLS) East Columbia Branch located at 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia, MD 21046;
- March 18, 2013 at HCLS Miller Branch , 9421 Frederick Road, Ellicott City, MD 21042; and
- May 6, 2013 at HCLS Savage Branch, 9525 Durness Lane, Laurel, MD 20723.
This is not an official Howard County Library System event, For more information, please contact Christine Martin at 410-964-9031 or firstname.lastname@example.org.