Healthy Teen Network needs your help to fund the printing and distribution of a graphic novel that addresses the important issues of bullying, self-esteem, and peer relationships.
The creation of the graphic novel has been funded with the gift to Healthy Teen Network from a generous donor. Money raised through the crowd funding campaign will be used to print and distribute copies of the book to Baltimore City middle-school aged youth. The books will be bundled with a teacher’s guide, developed by Healthy Teen Network, to encourage the use of the books in the classroom setting. We have set a goal to raise $10,000 in six weeks.
Award-winning graphic novelist Jonathon Scott Fuqua is in the process of creating the graphic novel, geared toward middle-school aged readers, that will feature MT Pitt, who first appeared in The Adventures of MT Pitt: Empty Pit No More, a children’s book produced by the Howard County Health Department. This new graphic novel will have an overarching healthy relationships message, focusing on healthy choices, self-esteem, peer relationships, anti-bullying, and other issues with which this age group will easily relate. The story is informed, in part, by a focus group, conducted by Healthy Teen Network, comprised of students from Baltimore’s Digital Harbor High School.
Bullying is an issue that affects many middle-school aged youth, with far-reaching effects. According to DoSomething.org, more than 3.2 million students are victims of bullying each year, and approximately 160,000 students skip school each day because of bullying. Physical bullying increases in elementary school and peaks in middle school.
Graphic novels have enjoyed increasing popularity in recent years and have become valuable tools for teachers in the classroom. Graphic novels have been particularly useful in developing literacy skills among reluctant readers, and readers for whom the language of the book is not their first. Healthy Teen Network interviewed several local Baltimore youth, sharing their appreciation for graphic novels--be sure to check out our campaign video to hear what they had to say!
If funded, the book will be distributed in Baltimore City Schools in the Fall.