|Express your concern to all individuals and organizations that influence young people.
- Contact your local PTA as well as youth, business and civic organizations not yet involved in the Coalition and encourage them to join.
- Contact local chapters of Coalition organizations and ask if you can help organize and administer their activities.
- Contact influential individuals the administration for your local schools, members of your local board of education and city council, state legislators, major employers to inform them of the work of the Coalition and to solicit their support.
Teach your family the importance of character by living according to the Six Pillars of Character.
- Make a point to emphasize the importance of good character in family discussions.
- Consciously and visibly use the Coalitions decision-making model.
- Look for opportunities to discuss the ethical implications of family situations, news stories, TV programs and movies in terms of the Six Pillars of Character: trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship. Dont simply preach or sermonize discuss. Listen to your children with firm conviction, but with respect.
- Discuss with your children favorite quotes from the Josephson Institutes library of quotations, asking them to explain and give other examples from their own lives. Start collecting your own list of quotations for discussion.
Hold yourself and others more strictly accountable to live up to the six core ethical values.
- When you are wrong, demonstrate accountability by admitting it and apologizing.
- If a teacher or other credible adult reports misconduct of a member of your family, dont automatically take the childs side. Dont threaten or intimidate someone who is doing in good faith what he or she should be doing.
- When members of your family or close work associates violate core ethical principles whether it is a failure to show respect or common courtesy, an act of selfishness or a lie express appropriate disapproval or impose sanctions. Dont let misconduct become the norm. Dont lower your expectations.
Inform yourself about what is going on in schools and youth organizations.
- Use Coalition materials to educate yourself on matters concerning the development of character and to develop more refined skills of teaching the Six Pillars of Character in all the contexts in which you relate to young people.
- Encourage your local schools to use CHARACTER COUNTS! assessment and surveying services to discover how much cheating and other forms of misbehavior are occurring. Make it clear to administrators that you expect them to maintain an environment that fosters honest, responsible and respectful behavior.
Create an atmosphere of positive and negative consequences that encourages and rewards good character.
- Praise conduct that exemplifies the core ethical values, especially when that conduct wasnt easy.
- Be sure that negative behavior results in appropriately negative consequences.
- Display CHARACTER COUNTS! posters, hand out CHARACTER COUNTS! wallet cards, wear the CHARACTER COUNTS! pin (and/or T-shirts, hats, patches, etc.) to build awareness. Encourage local schools and youth groups to acquire CHARACTER COUNTS! curricular materials and apparel to raise consciousness and generate support for character-building efforts.
Support individuals and organizations engaged in character-development activities.
- Write notes and letters, make phone calls, and otherwise express your support for groups and individuals engaged in character-building activities.
- Volunteer your time to support local CHARACTER COUNTS! activities through organizations which are members of the Coalition.
- Become a CHARACTER COUNTS! Advocate with an annual donation to the CHARACTER COUNTS! Coalition.