To date, there have been over 100,000 times a teen has opted to attend meetings for support and outreach.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How is MPOWRD different from other teen programs?
MPOWRD is the first program created by teens for teens. The format was developed with those standards and guidelines which teens felt were most successful and relative to their generation.
2. Who can join MPOWRD?
Any teen between the ages of 13-18 are welcome to join the program. 2B MPOWRD is available for middle school and M-Squared is available for young adults, ages 18-24.
3. Why don’t all high schools have this program for teens?
MPOWRD was created by teens for teens. If it hadn’t been for their initiative and perseverance, MPOWRD wouldn’t exist. Therefore, it is up to each of us to educate teen parents, their counselors, and high school administration about the importance of this program.
4. What is “addictive behavior” in reference to MPOWRD meetings?
Addictive behavior, as defined by MPOWRD, is “any habit that causes personal harm.” This definition is meant to be inclusive of all us, as no one is perfect, and everyone has some part of their own personal behavior that needs to be improved.
5. Who joined the meetings?
Teens, who had faith in the concept and the facilitator, joined the meetings to instill a program on site location that would give teens a voice. It could be utilized as a motivational peer support group within a structured curriculum led by teens. MPOWRD can also enhance communication and positive relationships in clubs, sports, student government and as a transitional program for teens in detention settings.
6. Who runs the meetings?
An adult facilitator is always present because MPOWRD is inclusive of minors, however, the entire objective of this organization is to turn the meetings over to teens. The leadership and empowerment is evident within the unconditional support that is shared in this group. All participating teens should have the opportunity to run MPOWRD meetings.
7. How do we let parents know about this program?
Parents need to be informed about MPOWRD’s objectives so that they understand that if their child chooses to participate in the program, it indicates a student’s interest in committing to positive change. MPOWRD provides an opportunity for teens to reflect on life issues, work on positive power, define a higher power of good and build a community within safe parameters. MPOWRD is a safe place to find peer support. Parents have always been interested and grateful for the support that MPOWRD offered their children.
8. Are teens allowed to view parts of the facilitator training?
Yes. We encourage facilitators to share modules with both the teens, staff and parent groups. Student leaders should be encouraged to view some of the dynamics that are applicable to them. As one student leader said, “We are all equal and are in this world to help each other. No one is perfect. We could all benefit from this program. I need to understand more.”
9. Why don’t teens discuss personal addictions in the group?
Teens decided that discussing an addiction or an addictive behavior, such as smoking, was a “trigger.” Teens felt that when meetings centered on these behaviors, the negative behavior or substance became the focus. Instead teens chose to focus on the reasons behind their decisions and create positive action plans and opportunities.
By creating these boundaries, teens felt that there was also no competition or unnecessary drama in the meetings. Teens while attending meetings maintain the opportunity to have a safe place without judgment or discrimination.
This rule became one of the most important dynamics in MPOWRD as teens actually “raised the bar” for all teens. Meetings became a place to talk about how life challenges become the catalyst for certain decisions. Instead of teens telling stories about using drugs, self-mutilation or other destructive choices, they might say, “I was really frustrated with my parents, hung out with the wrong people and messed up.” Therefore, they “owned” the reason that created the problem.
10. What about middle school preteens/teens and young adults?
MPOWRD was the original program developed for high school teens. Because MPOWRD teens were concerned about middle school students, they asked for a support program for this age-group. 2B MPOWRD was created with a format to address this level of maturation. M-Squared for young adults (18-24) is also available for transitioning this population into the community.