Monster Jam® and Kids Help Phone gear up for national initiative: Shift Gears. Stand Up. Stop Bullying.

Monster Jam Announces Large Ticket Donation in Support of Kids Help Phone and Bullying Awareness Week: November 17-23/13

TORONTO, Nov. 4, 2013 /CNW/ - I am bullied. I don't know why. I guess they do it for the fun of it. Anyway I have put up with it for 5 years and I'm tired of life....."

In Canada, a child or teen is bullied every seven minutes on the playground, and 65% of young people in a Kids Help Phone survey say they have been bullied online. Bullying can have a tremendous effect on young people's mental health and well-being, and those effects may stay with them for life.  By the time you finish reading this sentence, far too many young people in Canada will have been bullied physically, verbally, socially or online.

The Maple Leaf Monster Jam® Tour and Kids Help Phone have joined forces, for the first time ever, on a nationwide campaign to generate awareness about bullying in Canada and to empower young people to Shift Gears. Stand Up. Stop Bullying. The awareness campaign launches during Bullying Awareness Week, November 17-23, 2013, and encourages young people who have been bullied to seek help and those who have witnessed bullying to step in and do something to make it stop - or tell a trusted adult.

Did you know:

  • 1 in 5 middle school students report avoiding restrooms at school due to fear of being bullied. (Smokowski & Kopasz, 2005)

  • 87% of students in grades 8 to 10 reported witnessing school bullying in the past year. (Trach et al., 2010)

  • Bystanders can stop bullying:  Studies have shown that bullying stops within 10 seconds more than half of the time when a bystander intervenes. (Ahmed, 2008)

As part of this new initiative, a Monster Jam produced PSA will be unveiled online during Bullying Awareness Week featuring Canadian Monster Jam driver and former Monster Jam World FinalsSM Champion driver of Northern Nightmare, Cam McQueen. The PSA serves as a national call to action to help spread the word about Monster Jam and Kids Help Phone's joint initiative to Shift Gears. Stand Up. Stop Bullying. The goal is to encourage kids to support each other, become more inclusive, embrace differences and stand up to help or tell a trusted adult when they see someone being bullied. The PSA will be available online at www.monsterjamcanada.ca and www.kidshelpphone.ca. Visitors who view the PSA will receive an exclusive 2 for 1 ticket offer for a limited time to any Maple Leaf Monster Jam show during the 2014 season.

In addition, a portion of every Maple Leaf Monster Jam tour ticket sold will be donated to Kids Help Phone. The Maple Leaf Monster Jam Tour will generously donate 10,000 tickets to Kids Help Phone in support of their mission to prevent bullying.                                                                                         

As part of the campaign, bullying awareness events will be held in cities across Canada where Monster Jam shows will be held, starting in Toronto this January.  These week-of-show events will be attended by local youth and will include a Kids Help Phone bullying awareness presentation; an opportunity to take a bullying prevention pledge and sign a Monster Jam crush car with messages about bullying behaviours they would like to stop (e.g. "hitting," "talking behind someone's back," "name calling," "mean texts,"etc.); and the unique experience to have a front row seat to witness a Monster Jam truck crush the messaged car live on the spot!

"Monster Jam is revved up about our new partnership with Kids Help Phone in Canada. We are proud to lend our platform and resources to help put a spotlight on bullying, its negative effects and create a more inclusive mentality amongst our youth," said Amy Dubinsky, Feld Motor Sports Regional VP of Event Marketing and Sales. "Bullying continues to be a growing problem and prevention is everyone's responsibility. With Kids Help Phone's expertise and our loyal Canadian Monster Jam fans, together we hope to raise the level of awareness and improve mental wellness within local communities across Canada."

"We're very excited about the partnership with Monster Jam to raise awareness about bullying and the actions young people can take to address it," said Sharon Wood, President and CEO, Kids Help Phone. "This campaign tells young people that they themselves can lead the way when it comes to bullying, both in terms of speaking out to stop it or to get help, but also in terms of creating more inclusive environments where bullying can't thrive, because everyone is welcome and their differences are respected. We're grateful to Monster Jam for helping to bring this important message to kids and families right across Canada."

The Shift Gears. Stand Up. Stop Bullying. campaign will also be supported by venue and media partners and social media channels throughout Canada.

The 2014 Maple Leaf Monster Jam Tour will stop in the following cities and feature our special week-of-show event in each one (excluding Halifax):

Toronto, ON: January 18-19/14, Rogers Centre
Vancouver, BC:  February 1/14, BC Place
Edmonton, AB: February 8-9/14, Rexall Place
Winnipeg, MB: February 15-16/14, MTS Centre
London, ON: March 8 -10/14, Budweiser Gardens
Hamilton, ON: April 5-6/14, Copps Coliseum
Halifax, NS: May 31-June 1/14, Scotia Speedworld

Tickets are on sale now for the 2014 Maple Leaf Monster Jam Tour. Check www.monsterjamcanada.ca for details and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

For facts and information on bullying in Canada, tips to make a difference, or to make a donation to Kids Help Phone, visit www.kidshelphone.ca/bullyingawarenessweek.

Hashtag: #MJStandup

Note to editors: Hi res images and copies of the PSA are available upon request.

ABOUT FELD MOTOR SPORTS®
Feld Motor Sports, Inc. is the world leader in specialized arena and stadium-based motor sports entertainment.  Feld Motor Sports productions include Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam®, Monster Energy Supercross, AMSOIL Arenacross and Nuclear Cowboyz®.  Feld Motor Sports is a division of Feld Entertainment, the world's largest producer of live family entertainment.  For more information on Feld Entertainment, visit www.feldentertainment.com.

www.facebook.com/mjonline
www.twitter.com/monsterjam
www.youtube.com/monsterjamlive

ABOUT KIDS HELP PHONE

Kids Help Phone / Jeunesse J'écoute is a Canadian and world leader, known for its expertise in providing vital, innovative counselling services to children and youth. Since 1989 we have offered children, teens and young adults in Canada a critical lifeline of hope and support, through our free, anonymous and confidential service. Our professional counsellors support the mental health and well-being of young people ages five to 20, in urban, rural, and remote communities, by providing one-on-one counselling, information and resources online and by phone. Our internationally recognized, award-winning websites are considered a model of child-focused interactive design, and offer online counselling forums and engaging, therapeutic games, tools and information to encourage resilience and self-care. A community-based national charity, Kids Help Phone / Jeunesse J'écoute receives no guaranteed ongoing financial support from government or any large funder and relies on community and corporate support to keep our essential service available. We're there for the 6.5 million young people in Canada, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, in English and in French.

kidshelpphone.ca
facebook.com/kidshelpphone
youtube.com/kidshelpphone
twitter.com/kidshelpphone

SOURCE: The Maple Leaf Monster Jam Tour

For further information:

Beth Merrick     
ZAZOU Communications     
(416) 654-9881/beth@zazoupr.com

Liz Worth
KIDS HELP PHONE
(416) 581-8955/liz.worth@kidshelpphone.ca

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The Maple Leaf Monster Jam Tour

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