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Too often students operate under the assumption that they are not leaders, but leadership is developed over time, through experiences - some easy and some harder. If the only message we hear is that only a few CAN be leaders, our teens shut the door to developing these skills, when the message should be WE ARE ALL LEADERS - we just need the opportunities to practice. Peers not Fears creates those opportunities for all students, regardless of their current skill level. 

Why do we need leadership skills?

Peers not Fears believes that confidence and decision-making are leadership skills that can be developed and are not natural abilities. With that belief, we aim to reach teenagers in high school to develop and practice the skills that leaders often learn through trial and error. 

Peers not Fears is driven to change lives by creating, developing, and providing programs that support the skills needed to grow confidence, resilience, and awareness. We serve high school teens who can build these skills intentionally (not through life's challenges), so they are able to meet these challenges with confidence and empathy. 

We want to build transferrable skills in each and every teen. As a parent are you wondering if your teen is getting leadership opportunities? I would love to help navigate those questions with you. Check out our monthly Leadership program that engages teens with others and builds skills to develop strong decision-making, independence, and courage. 

How do we develop leadership skills?

We create, curate, and deliver content that works to develop accountability, team-building, and confidence. We have developed multiple online programs that you or your teens can complete to enhance their leadership skills. We have also created a six-session program, during which participants learn about obstacles and challenges that prevent others from showing up. We currently work with non-profit youth groups and middle and high-school-aged students. 

All too often, high schools believe they are already “doing” student leadership, but they are not building programs for all students. Our programming works to support all students in developing leadership skills, regardless of their natural leadership skills or belief that they are leaders.

It's time for a change in education, we need to empower our youth with both teaching and leadership so that they can take up the mantle of our future. What are you doing to empower students who want to make a difference? When we say an educator's job is to inspire the future generation, we should take this seriously.  So why not start imagining what could be, and that begins with listening to the voices of students?

Do you want to change the culture in your school?





To build a stronger tomorrow by empowering high school students through leadership.


Provide foundational and personalized leadership skills to high school teens, regardless of age, race, socioeconomic status, and gender.

High Fives

Donna Furlong, M.Ed.

Upper Elementary Principal, Grades 3-5

Hillsboro-Deering Elementary School

We hired Lorraine to work with our paraprofessional staff. We wanted to present them with something current, relevant, and thought-provoking. Mission accomplished.  Lorraine’s topics of discussion helped build our team of educators into a team of learners where trust was developed, vulnerability showed, and our teachers walked away stronger for it. And the best part is that when they signed off from the PD, it didn’t end there. All of the topics are relevant enough so that they still come back around every day and have us reflecting differently on how we see the world and each other.

Hi, I am Lorraine!

Leadership is Developed

I believe that we are all developing leadership. Students are under the assumption that leaders are born, but I know that we are all developing as leaders

Too many of us, myself included, don't see ourselves as the leaders we are. I am on a mission to change that myth. Leaders are not born they are developed, we need to provide opportunities for us to grow as leaders. Making mistakes is part of the process, and while the stakes are high in developing leaders the ultimate growth of a positive school culture is worth it!

After spending 20 years in the classroom I realized that we were not only perpetuating the myth, we were using it to our advantage. I didn't see myself as a leader, I was just a teacher, just a mom, just - just - just. When one (or several) of my students told me they were leaders I knew I had to redefine leadership for myself, so I could change my belief in others. 


I know that there is a lot of fear in schools, and so much of that fear is built into relationships with our peers. If we see our peers as leaders and ourselves as leaders, we can start seeing community!

Melissa Minery

School Counselor/Student Services

Spark Academy of Advanced Technologies

Lorraine worked with our first-year students over a period of weeks to develop leadership skills. Our students looked forward to her engaging activities. What I really appreciated was the time she took to write thoughtful observations for each of the 25 students who participated. She positively reinforced the students' strengths and gently encouraged them to approach challenges in new ways. I look forward to working with her again.
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