M-W CARES Day 2018

C.A.R.E.S. logo with two hands

Congratulations to M-W High School student Christina Bitzer, winner of the CARES logo contest!

On October 26, 2018, Monroe-Woodbury High School held its first-ever M-W CARES Day for high school students and staff. M-W CARES Day is designed to promote Compassion, Acceptance, Respect, Empowerment and Success throughout the Monroe-Woodbury community. The day featured assemblies and workshops presented by more than 100 courageous, inspiring individuals who shared their personal stories of overcoming obstacles and achieving success. This event was the largest character education program hosted by a school district in the Hudson Valley region.

Students attended four sessions, selected in advance, one keynote speaker assembly and a general assembly.

“As educators, we spend a lot of time talking to our students about the challenges they will face in life. Many of them are grappling with difficult issues as teenagers. The inspiration behind M-W CARES is our desire to help our children better understand that there is always help and support, even when they feel all hope is lost. We hope these powerful speakers have changed the way our students approach life moving forward,” said Monroe-Woodbury High School Principal and M-W CARES organizer John Kaste.

The keynote speaker for Grades 9 & 10 was former WWE Wrestling Champion Marc Mero. Mero’s. His compelling message touches upon bullying, peer pressure, substance abuse and suicide prevention. The keynote speaker for Grades 11 & 12  was Tara Conner, a former Miss USA, who enlightens audiences about the disease of addiction, harmful stigma and the real beauty of recovery. All students also attended an assembly featuring Kaila Mullady, world champion beatboxer, actress, producer, educator and social entrepreneur.

Among the topics discussed throughout the day included:

  • Depression
  • Drug Addiction/Substance Abuse
  • Overcoming physical disabilities
  • Suicide
  • Family violence
  • LGBTQ awareness and support
  • Overcoming learning disabilities
  • The Power of Forgiveness
  • Surviving the Unthinkable – Holocaust; 9/11/01; Israel/suicide bomb; Oklahoma city bombing; Boston Marathon bombing; WWII Concentration Camp liberator; Virginia Tech shooting; Parents of Sandy Hook Elementary victim
  • Anti-bullying/sexting
  • Empowerment/perseverance
  • Dating violence
  • Civic Engagement
  • Drunk Driving
  • Living with AIDS

“Today’s high school age children deal with many pressures at school and outside of our school buildings. As a district, we want to share information and resources that will empower them to be successful, healthy individuals who in turn make a difference in our community. Talking about these types of tough topics at school will then lend itself to conversations at home,” said M-W Superintendent of Schools Elsie Rodriguez.


Speakers & Presenters

Keynote/Assembly Speakers

Presenters A-F

Presenters G-Sm

Presenters Sp-Z