What is the Character Development Program?

The Medal of Honor Character Development Program (CDP) is a resource designed by teachers to provide students with opportunities to explore the important concepts of courage, commitment, sacrifice, patriotism, integrity and citizenship and how these values can be exemplified in daily life. This program is available in every state and has conducted on-site training for educators in 45 states and DC. Recently, the Congressional Medal ofHonor Foundation was awarded a five-year $3 million dollar grant fromThe Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation – the largest grant ever received – to pursue extensive implementation in 12 states.

“This is a unique opportunity to take inspiration from the character traits embodied by Medal of Honor Recipients and re-instill a strong sense of civic leadership among our youth,” said Penelope McPhee, President of The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation. “We are proud to play our part in helping the next generation learn from the stories and lives of veterans, who have given us all so much.”

Teachers who go the extra mile to bring this interactive program into the classroom have seen first-hand the impact that it can have on their students.

“Students realize quickly that all types of people can be heroes. The videos of Medal ofHonor Recipients depict them as real, ordinary people who did the extraordinary when a situation called for it and our students can relate to that,” says Sheila Edwards, a teacher atSierra Vista Middle School in Covina, California.

The Character Development Program is more than a classroom curriculum. It impacts students throughout their daily lives, helps them deal with various stressors, and shapes them to be leaders of integrity for years to come.

“We deal with a lot of pressures as teens, and the Medal of Honor values can help us put those pressures in perspective and deal with them…and learn how to apply the values in our daily lives,” says Katelyn Ibarra, a high school student and recipient of the CitizenHonors Young Hero Award.

Without the thousands of trained educators who help us perpetuate the legacy of the Medal of Honor among our youth, we wouldn’t be able to make the difference that we do.

“Recipient stories need to be told and their names need to be known. I feel a responsibility to the Recipients and to my students to ensure that their experiences are not forgotten,” says Ray Brassard, a high school teacher and football coach in Puyallup, Washington.

Join us in preserving and perpetuating the legacy of the Medal of Honor and honoring our nation’s heroes by making a charitable donation to the Foundation. The CongressionalMedal of Honor Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with tax ID number 25-1828488. You can also keep up with our upcoming events, special announcements, and partner/recipient highlights by joining our monthly newsletter.

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