We hate that we had to make a campaign like this. But 1 in 4 teens will experience dating violence this year. And 4 out of 5 parents don’t believe teen dating violence is even an issue. This isn’t okay.
Together with Willow Domestic Violence Center, we set out to educate and empower teens on an issue that, whether they realize it or not, does affect them. We began by learning about the world of local 15- to 18-year olds. Our key takeaways:
They don’t know dating violence is something that affects people their age.
Sugarcoating serious issues is a major turn off. So is trying to be “cool”.
They are incredibly motivated when it comes to issues they care about.
From there Generation Zero was born—a straightforward, stat-driven campaign that gives teens the facts they demand while tapping into their activist spirits. It’s a call for a movement to end dating violence for good. Because if any generation is going to make 1 in 4 zero, it’s going to be Gen Z.
To further establish empathy and awareness of the many forms of abuse that dating violence can manifest in, we’re also building a text simulation for Willow’s education program. Through the three-day experience, teens will date a faux-partner. They’ll learn about the many red flags of an abusive relationship, what abuse can “look like” and what it feels like to be in a relationship where a partner is trying to maintain power and control.