The U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association (USWNTPA), LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, and social impact education innovator EVERFI, Inc. today joined the students of Santee Elementary School in San Jose to launch The Compassion Project for the 2019-2020 school year.
A national nonprofit dedicated to providing compassion education to elementary school students across the U.S., The Compassion Project is a collaboration between Weiner, the visionary behind the project, and EVERFI. The compassion curriculum combines engaging animated videos, classroom-based lessons, and digital activities to help teachers facilitate lessons around fundamental social and emotional learning (SEL) skills.
As the first partner of The Compassion Project, the USWNTPA is making the program available at no cost to schools in six select markets as part of an initial launch phase, beginning in fall 2019. The USWNTPA believes in advancing skills that lead to good character both on and off the field. Whether standing up for diversity, women’s rights, LGBTQ issues, and equal pay, the players have a track record of being socially aware and active in the community. The team recognizes the role of compassion, a positive attitude, and teamwork in creating a winning team, something they are focused on as they prepare for the upcoming World Cup.
The leading provider of education for the real world, EVERFI has been providing scalable solutions for critical life skills since 2008. Partnering with EVERFI on The Compassion Project is a natural progression of the work the USWNTPA is already known for and brings together well-known entities focused on leaving a positive mark on society.
“The USWNTPA and its Soccer+Social Impact committee are committed to educating and empowering today’s youth, who will be the leaders and role models of tomorrow,” said McCall Zerboni, member of the U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association Soccer+Social Impact Committee.
“The Compassion Project embodies the mission of the USWNTPA’s Soccer+Social Impact committee by teaching children about compassion, something we recognize as critical to our own growth as individuals, but even more importantly, to our growth and success as a team,” added Tobin Heath, another member of the U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association Soccer+Social Impact Committee.
“Expanding the Players Association Soccer+Social Impact committee is something our members have been committed to for a long time and we couldn’t think of a better partner than EVERFI,” said Becca Roux, Executive Director for the U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association. “We value their emphasis on developing curriculums that focus on critical skills, and even more their commitment to partnering on a curriculum that aligns with the mission and goals of our Soccer+Social Impact strategy. We’re looking forward to seeing The Compassion Project launched in schools throughout 2019, with the goal that this becomes a much broader opportunity for students in the future.”
Today’s event is the official kick-off of the larger national initiative and includes current National Team members, prior to their departing to compete at the Women’s World Cup in France this Summer. National Team members including Becky Sauerbrunn, Sam Mewis, and Kelley O’Hara, will be joined by USWNT alumni such as Aly Wagner and Danielle Slaton. Event attendees will participate in a unique classroom activity with National Team members and Weiner that features students creating skits demonstrating that they have learned how to identify an opportunity for compassion and take an action to show compassion to themselves or another.
“Today’s event is a perfect illustration of the vision that EVERFI and the USWNTPA had in mind when we committed to this partnership,” said Becky Sauerbrunn, member of the U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association Soccer+Social Impact Committee. “We, as players, are excited to show up in schools and use our platform to remind young students that whether it’s competing at the highest level of sport, performing in school, or just being a positive member of your community, it’s never too early to start practicing compassion.”
Research has shown that students exposed to Social Emotional Learning (SEL) in school continue to do better than their peers on a number of indicators: positive social behaviors and attitudes, skills such as empathy and teamwork, and academic achievement. These students also have fewer conduct problems, less emotional distress, and lower drug use, among many other benefits.
“As parents, educators, and citizens, we want our children to grow up in a kinder, more compassionate world, and that starts with early education on Social Emotional Learning topics such as compassion,” explained Jon Chapman, Co-Founder and President of EVERFI. “Compassion involves the coordinated response of a lot of skills that positively affect student well-being — mindfulness, self-care, emotional literacy, kindness. These skills are also important for student self-regulation and cooperation, which lead to better learning environments.”
The Compassion Project curriculum is developed in accordance with CASEL Social and Emotional Learning standards, as well as Common Core and State ELA Standards. It was developed by Washington, D.C.-based EVERFI, the critical skills education leader that has certified more than 20 million learners in 20,000 schools.
Starting in the Fall of 2019, USWNT Player Ambassadors will begin hosting events in local schools in six cities throughout the U.S. to reinforce the national initiative on a local level, where they live and play as part of the USWNTPA Social Impact mission.
1 Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL)
EVERFI is the pioneer in education solutions uniquely addressing social impact issues. The company provides learners of all ages education for the real world through scalable digital learning platforms. Founded in 2008, EVERFI is fueled by its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) subscription model and has certified over 30 million learners with more than 3,500 partners across 50 states, Canada, and Puerto Rico. EVERFI tackles society’s most important intractable issues through the power of education and as the convener of thought leadership consortiums including the Financial Capability Network, Prescription Drug Safety Network, Campus Prevention Network, and the Digital Wellness Network. Some of America’s leading CEOs and venture capital firms are EVERFI investors including Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, Twitter founder Evan Williams, Advance Publications, Rethink Education, and Rethink Impact. To learn more about EVERFI visit everfi.com or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn or Twitter @EVERFI.
About The Compassion Project
The Compassion Project was founded by LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner in collaboration with EVERFI Inc., a social impact education technology innovator. The Compassion Project is a national nonprofit dedicated to providing compassion education to elementary school students across the U.S via curriculum focused on fundamental social and emotional learning (SEL) skills building. Lessons are uniquely designed around defining empathy and compassion, identifying emotions, performing acts of kindness, and practicing mindfulness and growth mindset. More than 9,700 teachers across 6,400 elementary schools have signed on to use the curriculum since its launch in September 2018.
About the U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association
The U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association (USWNTPA) serves as a leading advocate for women’s soccer players, pioneering a new era of women’s soccer as a preeminent sport. The primary mission of the USWNTPA is to protect the rights of USWNT players and to advance and safeguard the economic and social welfare of all USWNT players, both on and off the field. The USWNTPA is committed to raising the level of women’s soccer domestically and continuing to grow the game worldwide.
Jennifer Edgerly, EVERFI
Becca Roux, USWNT Players Association