KALAMAZOO—The Western Heroes program has scheduled training dates to give WMU students and employees the knowledge, awareness and confidence to safely step in when they see potentially harmful behavior.
The Bystander Intervention Committee launched the program in May to counteract the "bystander effect," which holds that the greater the number of people present during an emergency, the less likely it is that any will actually intervene.
More than 500 Western Heroes have already been trained. To become part of this bystander intervention movement, students as well as faculty and staff members are invited to attend 75-minute training sessions at 1 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 25, or 3 p.m. Monday, Nov. 12, in 3131 Sindecuse Health Center. Registration is requested.
The training sessions are designed to increase awareness of and intervention in a variety of situations, from conversations laced with dehumanizing language to actions that pose serious health risks. Those trained take the Western Heroes pledge, then receive a card to post. Student participants also receive a T-shirt.
• Notice when something is happening
• Evaluate the situation to see if assistance is needed
• Assume responsibility to step in and help
• Obtain the education necessary to know what to do
• Step up and make a difference
The program encourages all members of the campus community to encourage healthy, ethical and responsible behavior in order to ensure a safe, healthy and inclusive campus environment.
The Bystander Intervention Committee is a collaboration of several WMU offices and student groups. The committee co-chairs are Cari Robertson, director of the Office of Health Promotion and Education, and Jeremy Ynclan, assistant director of Residence Life.
To register for a Western Heroes training session, contact Cari Robertson at firstname.lastname@example.org or (269)-387-3263.
For more information, visit facebook.com/WesternHEROES.