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Collective Impact

Stay True to You

Stay True to You

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“The Center for Disease Control has identified teen pregnancy prevention as a Winnable Battle. With additional effort and support for evidence-based, cost-effective strategies that we can implement now, we will have a significant impact on our nation’s health.” (Source:

The number of babies born to teen mothers in Rochester has declined 2008. Despite this progress, Rochester still has one of the highest rates of unintended pregnancy in New York State, and our community’s averages are still above national numbers

Over the past year, Causewave helped to convene a powerhouse of local experts to create the Stay True to You campaign. The initiative is focused on reducing the number of unintended pregnancies in young women by improving access to and awareness of all available contraception methods. The Steering Committee determined that the key message should aim at educating young women so that they can make informed reproductive choices without judgment.

JAY, a local advertising and marketing agency, created and donated an eye-catching messaging with media to intrigue young women to learn more about their birth control options. Additional key pro bone production partners include Entercom Rochester, Whitman Consulting, City Blue Imaging Services, Soucier Design, Initial Here Creative Services and Accountable Digital.

Our partners on the Stay True to You campaign include Action for a Better Community, Healthy Baby Network, Highland Family Planning, Hoekelman Center at URMC, IBERO American Action League, Jordan Health, Metro Council for Teen Potential, Monroe County Department of Public Health, Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York, Rochester City School District and Rochester-Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative.

Visit to learn more.

drive2Bbetter: Traffic Safety

drive2Bbetter: Traffic Safety

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Driver error remains the number one cause of crashes involving cars and bicyclists/pedestrians, despite the fact that drivers have the most power to prevent these accidents from happening in the first place.

The drive2Bbetter Campaign is has been brought to life through the work of community-wide stakeholders who strive to improve safety for all road users – including pedestrians and bicyclists.

The initial phase of the campaign focuses on three desired driver behaviors: slowing down, scanning for pedestrians and bicyclists, and leaving at least 3 feet of space when following, driving beside or passing a bicyclist on the road. By following these three simple driving habits we can begin to reduce the nearly 1.3 crashes that happen each day in Rochester.

Our partners on the drive2Bbetter campaign include AARP, Center for Disability Rights, City of Rochester, City of Rochester Police Department, Common Ground Health, Genesee Transportation Council, Injury Free Coalition for Kids of Rochester, Monroe County Department of Health, Monroe County Department of Public Safety, MVP Healthcare, Reconnect Rochester, Regional Transit Service (RTS), Rochester Cycling Alliance, School 19 – Rochester City School District, United Way of Greater Rochester.

Visit to learn more information.

H2O Hero: Water Pollution Prevention

H2O Hero: Water Pollution Prevention

Our region is home to some of the most beautiful freshwater in the world.  Thanks to the abundance of this natural resource, we have access to plentiful clean drinking water, are a tourism destination, enjoy year-round recreational activities, and have untapped economic development potential.

Unfortunately, the Rochester Embayment area has been identified as 1 of 43 Areas of Concern in the Great Lakes due to harmful human activity, while historical and current pollution problems continue to impair the quality of this precious resource.

With our partners at the Water Education Collaborative (WEC) and SIGMA Marketing, we are working to increase awareness and understanding regarding water quality and how individuals can make a difference.  Since non-point source pollution principally comes from stormwater run-off, and is affected by people’s daily activities, the WEC’s overarching mission is to address this problem by promoting water quality education in the community and encouraging stewardship in one’s own backyard. The “H2O Hero” campaign launched in May 2007, and has seen success in the form of hundreds of additional volunteers and education delivered at the award-winning website, as well as rain barrel education.

Every Minute in School Matters

Every Minute in School Matters

We’re working with the Rochester City School District (RCSD), Partners + Napier, ROC The Future, and other community organizations, to reduce chronic absenteeism in city elementary schools.  Chronic absenteeism — defined as missing two or more days a month over the course of a school year — is directly linked to poor performance in every measure of student achievement. 

This is a critically important issue in our community as the RCSD is currently the lowest performing district in New York State and more than 33% of students are chronically absent. 

Every Minute in School Matters is a community impact initiative of people and organizations working together to improve student success by helping parents understand the critical link between early grade attendance and the long-term success of their child. 

Partners + Napier developed a multimedia campaign with messages that encourage parents of pre-k - 3rd graders to embrace their responsibility to have their kids in school 100% of the time. The initiative is also working to increase programmatic supports to help parents overcome barriers that might prevent kids from getting to school like transportation, a problem at home, or lack of warm winter clothing. 

We’ve seen promising initial results. Over the first two years of the initiative, there was an 20% reduction in the number of chronically absent students across all RCSD elementary schools, meaning 1,700 fewer students were chronically absent.  In target schools, where there has been additional focus, there was an even greater decline in K-3 chronic absenteeism from 47% in ’13-’14 to 34% in ’15-’16.

Email to find out how you can be part of the movement to boost student achievement in the Rochester City School District through this initiative.

PARTNERS: Rochester City School District | Partners + Napier | Tipping Point Communications | Charles Settlement House| Big Brothers Big Sisters | Ibero American Action League & PODER | City of Rochester | Monroe County Department of Human Services | Rochester Public Library | Goodwill of the Finger Lakes' 211/Lifeline | Wegmans

Nancy J. Farrell| United Way of Greater Rochester | Summit Federal Credit Union | ESL Charitable Foundation | Rochester Area Community Foundation | The Strong National Museum of Play | WDKX

Read about the 2017 "Cold Can't Stop Us" Winter Attendance Challenge here. 

Let's Make Lead History: Lead Poisoning Prevention

Let's Make Lead History: Lead Poisoning Prevention

Since 2004, we have worked alongside the Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning, Roberts Communications and dozens of other community organizations and individuals to address childhood lead poisoning. When the initiative launched, Rochester’s rates of lead poisoning exceeded the national rates by 10 times. 

The City of Rochester passed a lead ordinance in 2006 that is one of the most ambitious in the nation. The policy has been recognized as a leader in cost-efficiency and effectiveness, having identified over 9,000 homes with interior lead hazards since it began.

The Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning provides community-wide education to the general public, health professionals, property owners, contractors, and parent groups. Roberts Communications partnered with us to develop materials in multiple languages about lead paint hazards and the importance of getting children tested at ages 1 and 2.

Today, our region is looked to as a national model in reducing the number of children reported with lead poisoning, with an 85 percent reduction to date. In the past ten years, more than 5,600 children have been spared from the terrible effects of this public health hazard because of the collaborative efforts of local government agencies, the Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning, community agencies, and property owners. 

Still, the job isn’t done yet. In 2014 there were 609 Rochester area children reported to have unacceptably high blood lead levels — that’s enough to fill more than 30 kindergarten classrooms

Visit or email to find out how you can be part of the movement to protect Rochester’s children from the dangers of lead poisoning.

PARTNERS: The Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning| Roberts Communications | Greater Rochester Health Foundation |City of Rochester | Monroe County | Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency | BRX Global Research |Content Central | Icon Films |Forest McMullin Photography | Grant Taylor Photography

Get Screened Rochester: Cancer Screening Awareness

Get Screened Rochester: Cancer Screening Awareness

For years, the Cancer Services Program of Monroe County (CSPMC) has been partnering with Causewave Community Partners on a messaging campaign focused on encouraging the uninsured or under-insured population to get breast, cervical, and colorectal cancer screenings. 

In the Rochester area, research shows a lack of insurance coverage is just one of many barriers to individuals seeking out and receiving cancer screenings. Other screening barriers include: fear of finding cancer, confusing screening guidelines, and not having time to get screened. The Get Screened Rochester initiative is all about connecting our community members with local resources that can help them overcome cancer screening barriers.

Our partners include Cancer Services Program of Monroe County, Center for Community Health-URMC, Common Ground Health, Greater Rochester American Cancer Society, Jordan Health, Martino Flynn, Paychex, Rochester Regional Health, and Wilmot Cancer Institute.

Visit for more information.

Pass Life On: Organ Donation

Pass Life On: Organ Donation

When someone in need receives an organ, not only is their wait over—their new life can begin.  To an organ recipient, a donor is the Greatest Person Never Known. 

Organ donors can save up to eight people and impact countless more. Unfortunately, many people awaiting transplants live limited lives or die while on the waiting list.  Although a majority of people hold a positive view of organ donation, many have not take the step of joining the organ donor registry.

With our partners at the Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network, the Pass Life On campaign encourages everyone to live life to the fullest and then help others to do the same by enrolling as an organ donor.  The campaign also urges people to learn the facts about organ donation and talk to loved ones about their last wishes.  

Our partners on the Pass Life On campaign include the University of Rochester Medical Center, National Kidney Foundation, Rochester Regional Health System, Lions Eye Bank at Rochester (formerly Rochester/Finger Lakes Eye & Tissue Bank), Excellus Blue Cross and Blue Shield, and Transplant Awareness Organization of Greater Rochester. Creative development of this campaign was donated by Brand Cool.

Visit to join the organ donor registry.

Yeah, You're THAT Distracting: Distracted Driving Prevention

Yeah, You're THAT Distracting: Distracted Driving Prevention

Texting while driving is three times more dangerous than drunk driving—it increases your risk of a crash by 23 times (Virginia Tech, 2009) and is now the leading cause of teen deaths, according to a study by Cohen Children’s Medical Center.

The Yeah, You’re That Distracting campaign takes a unique approach by targeting the person outside the car – the driver’s family and friends. The message is simple: if you're talking or texting with someone while on the road, hold the conversation until a safer time. Otherwise, you could be the cause of an accident – or worse.

In 2012, Causewave conducted an observational study of local distracted driving behaviors –physically counting 11,000 cars – and found that one in every 34 drivers were visibly distracted by the use of a cellphone. In 2014, a follow-up study showed a 20% decline in distracted driving behaviors and that one in every 42 drivers were visibly distracted. The third installation of this study, conducted just this September, revealed that distracted driving has remained flat over the past two years. 

There is more work to do. If you’d like to get involved please contact us or visit 

This initiative is sponsored by Allstate, Isaac Heating & Air Conditioning, Rochester Automobile Dealers Association, Empire State Safety Instructors, and Rochester Regional Health.

Pro bono partners: Roberts Communications is the creative partner, Innovative Solutions developed the website, and Tipping Point Communications is our public relations partner. 

Be Brave For Kids: Child Sexual Abuse Prevention

Be Brave For Kids: Child Sexual Abuse Prevention

In partnership with Bivona Child Advocacy Center, we are working to educate adults in our community about child sexual abuse and provide them with the tools they need to both recognize the signs and prevent it from happening. 

The statistics speak for themselves. One of every four girls and one of every six boys is sexually abused before their 18th birthday. Only 1 out of 10 children who are sexually abused will tell someone. Some never disclose.
This initiative gets people talking about the problem and provides a confidential resource to help them determine what, if anything needs to be done.

Catalyst is our pro bono partner on this campaign. Other partners on this campaign include Monroe County Child Protective Services, and area school districts. Learn more at