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Sam Acho hosts Character Playbook LIVE

Posted Sep 22, 2017

Bears outside linebacker Sam Acho teamed up with the United Way and virtually joined Chicago Public School students in their classrooms.

Linebacker Sam Acho and the United Way of Metro Chicago hosted a new virtual classroom experience called Character Playbook LIVE on Tuesday, September 19 as part of the year two expansion of Character Playbook ™, a digital character education program powered by digital learning innovator Everfi Inc. and presented by the NFL and United Way.

Character Playbook LIVE is part of a league-wide initiative to engage more students in the important conversation of why character matters. All 32 NFL teams will host an event beginning in Week 2 of the regular season. For the Bears Character Playbook LIVE event, Sam Acho virtually joined Chicago Public School students in their classrooms and connect lessons taught in Character Playbook modules to life inside and outside of football. Students had the chance to engage with Sam in a personal manner through an interactive activity and Q&A session.

“We are pleased with the positive strides Character Playbook has made on students’ understanding of these critical topics and look forward to expanding its impact,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “Character Playbook is a program for all students, athletes and non-athletes alike, and addresses values we prioritize as a league. Everfi and United Way, our nonprofit partner for over 40 years, have been instrumental throughout this process and understand the importance of educating students on these issues in an accessible and interactive way.”

Sam Acho
Bears linebacker Sam Acho speaks to students.

The data around social emotional learning indicates a growing need in classrooms. The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning found that students who participated in Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) programs saw an 11 percentile point gain in achievement in social and emotional skills, attitudes, behavior and academic performance. Character Playbook is addressing these issues head on and supporting students in building the skills they need to be successful contributors to their communities through improved communication skills, recognizing positive and negative influences, managing their emotions, resolving conflicts and stepping up for one another.

“Good character is a critical building block of strong individuals and strong communities,” said President and CEO of United Way Worldwide Brian Gallagher. “By helping young people develop and recognize healthy relationships, Character Playbook is providing our next generation with the tools to succeed. It’s another great example of how the NFL and United Way are combining the love of team with a deep commitment to community to make a difference.”

The NFL and United Way invite fans and supporters to get involved in this ground-breaking effort through a new fundraising initiative designed to expand Character Playbook even further. More details can be found at www.United2Win.com.

About United Way Worldwide:

United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. Supported by 2.8 million volunteers, 9.8 million donors worldwide, and more than $4.7 billion raised every year, United Way is the world's largest privately-funded nonprofit. We're engaged in nearly 1,800 communities across more than 40 countries and territories worldwide to create sustainable solutions to the challenges facing our communities. United Way partners include global, national and local businesses, nonprofits, government, civic and faith-based organizations, along with educators, labor leaders, health providers, senior citizens, students and more. For more information about United Way, please visit UnitedWay.org. Follow us on Twitter: @UnitedWay and #LiveUnited.

About The NFL Foundation:

The National Football League Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of those touched by the game of football – from players at all levels to communities across the country. The NFL Foundation represents the 32 NFL clubs and supports the health, safety and wellness of athletes, youth football and the communities that support our game. For more information on the NFL Foundation, visit: NFLFoundation.org.

About EVERFI, Inc.:

EVERFI, Inc. is the leading education technology company that provides learners of all ages education for the real world, through innovative and scalable digital learning. Founded in 2008, EVERFI is fueled by its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) subscription model and has certified over 16 million learners in critical skill areas. 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, TPG Growth, The Rise Fund, Advance Publications, and Rethink Education, and Rethink Impact. The EVERFI Education Network powers more than 4,200 partners in their education initiatives across all 50 states and Canada. Learn more at EVERFI.com.