Will You Hear Me Now?

In the year 2020, gun violence became the number one killer of children in the United States.

Our mission is to empower tomorrow's leaders to raise their voices today--against gun violence and for their own safety in their schools and communities.

... come from students across the U.S. who are interviewed or make selfies about gun violence in schools. They are our future leaders. We share their words here to give them the voice they deserve.

Will You Hear Me Now?

The Words

Protect us now!
This is a forum for young people to raise their voices against firearm violence and for mental wellness.
See more of our May Mental Health Awareness content.

The Song is a one-of-a-kind choral performance written and sung by the fabulous Detroit Youth Choir, a finalist on NBC’s America’s Got Talent, Season 14. We seek other young choirs, artists and performers to add their voices to the message.

Will You Hear Me Now?

The Song

Will You Hear Me Now?

Our Support

America’s Got Talent (AGT) finalist Detroit Youth Choir
America’s Got Talent (AGT) finalist Detroit Youth Choir

All donations are used to defray the costs of production, editing, post-production and national distribution of this original video project.

WE BELIEVE SCHOOLS SHOULD BE SAFE HAVENS FOR ALL KIDS TO LEARN AND THRIVE WITHOUT FEAR OF GUN VIOLENCE.

We are a team of filmmakers, young activists, artists and musicians who are all passionately committed to giving young people a voice to address gun violence in schools.

Will You Hear Me Now?

THE TEAM

Michael Finan is a three-time Emmy award-winning director/producer of corporate video, TV commercials, public service announcements and documentaries. He has thirty years of producing and directing experience, managing projects that include product and drug launches, sales and marketing, interactive/web based, personnel training, community affairs, and public relations programming. A father of two, Michael’s deep passion for children’s issues and child advocacy have driven many creative media projects, including this one.

Rick Weiss is an award-winning screenwriter with 35 years of experience scripting signature films, marketing, healthcare and technology-focused explainer videos for Fortune 100 firms. Rick has lent decades of services to NPOs, including several volunteer leadership positions, board memberships and recently, website design for the Big Picture Alliance, an organization that teaches digital storytelling skills to at-risk teens in their schools and community settings. As a dad and a writer, he devotes his time to projects that embrace literacy, safety and empowerment for young people (our future).

Jim Papoulis is a multi-talented, multi-genre composer who co-founded the Foundation for Small Voices, which was officially launched with its first Sounds of a Better World concert at Carnegie Hall in January 2000. Jim dedicates a significant portion of his time and talent to teaching songwriting workshops worldwide for FSV. His methodology involves inspiring and eliciting the voices of children by composing music with and for them, that they can share with the world. Jim is the inspiration behind and subject of an upcoming PBS documentary, Because of Music.

Martin Hara is a Multi-Emmy Award-winning broadcast design director and digital media producer with extensive experience in merging best practices in video production, digital design, and social media marketing. He is known for his elegant web designs and is a key advisor to nonprofits, creative principals, and clients who need to create lasting impressions in an ever-increasingly busy mediasphere.

Will You Hear Me Now?

Our Team Members

Vijay Satyanarayana is a business and technology IT leader. Vijay joins this initiative as a concerned citizen and as a parent of 2 daughters. "This project is so important because it brings the voices of the children whose lives gun violence impacts to the forefront, but in a positive and creative way, rather than waiting for another tragedy having to occur,” Vijay says. “We need to maintain focus on this until more effective steps are taken to keep our younger generations safer."

The Young People featured on this site are survivors, influencers, and ordinary kids who contribute their voices and ask the audience Will You Hear Me Now? They are the most important members of all.

Anitha Iyer, PhD,
Anitha Iyer, PhD,

Dr. Anitha Iyer is the Director of Behavioral Health Population Management at Mount Sinai Health Partners, and Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. She is a recognized leader in the innovative delivery of crisis and behavioral health services, and has served as a subject matter expert for media engagement on matters pertaining to mental health and suicide prevention. She currently serves as a member of the National Steering Committee for the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.

Gavin Ransom
Gavin Ransom

Gavin Ransom is a young adult who has worked for multiple non-profit organizations. He feels it is important to give students a voice for gun violence and mental health. Looking out for youth representation, Gavin believes this organization gives students that platform they need.

Will You Hear Me Now?

Our Partners

We are grateful to our partners and allies

who continue to lend their support and inspiration

to this unique project.

Will You Hear Me Now?

Next Steps

May is Mental Health Awareness Month!

As our society struggles with increasing gun violence, all month long, mental health advocates are engaging creative and effective ways to raise awareness of the critical role that mental health plays in our sense of safety and well-being.

What’s true for the general public is particularly true for young people who face the risk of firearm violence in their schools and communities. There is growing consensus that young people themselves, teachers, mental health care professionals, pediatricians and parents, all can and must work together.

Timely mental health treatment is one vital deterrent to the epidemic of gun suicide and violence sweeping this country. New content is coming, so watch this space in the coming weeks.

The Documentary

We are actively planning a longer form documentary, in addition to partnering with other media professionals and educators to produce professional safety and citizen engagement content for young people.

MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES:

www.988lifeline.org/help-yourself/youth:

988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. A ton of information that is applicable to more broad mental health needs, including links to resources for LGBTQiA+ teens.

www.childmind.org:

The Child Mind Institute is a leading independent nonprofit in children’s mental health dedicated to transforming the lives of children and families struggling with mental health and learning disorders.

Will You Hear Me Now?

CONTACT US

Join us in our important work to empower young people and provide them a new voice to address reforms critical to their future.

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and comments.
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