Free Autism-Informed School Assembly Reaches One Million Students Globally


BUFFALO, N.Y., /PRNewswire/ -- Devin's Message Foundation has partnered with national youth speaker Brooks Gibbs to create an Autism-informed educational film that is being shown to schools in Western New York and expanding to more than 1,000 schools around the world for free. An estimated one million students will see the film.

The film begins with an introduction by Joe Smajdor, founder of Devin's Message Foundation. Joe's grandson Devin Kurzdorfer committed suicide April 15, 2017 after endless bullying in school. He was a high-functioning autistic 15-year-old boy who struggled with social problems on campus and online. His mother, Toni Kurzdorfer, believes the years of cyber-bullying and harassment from other students in his high school led to his decision. 

Brooks Gibbs, the spokesman for the campaign, believes teaching Autism-informed social skills in schools will help empower kids like Devin to navigate social problems and avoid despair. "I was inspired by Devin's family to create a message that appealed to students of all learning abilities, especially those on the Autism spectrum. My message breaks down social aggression into three behavioral categories (Joking, Hurting, and Controlling) and I use entertaining role-playing games to demonstrate why people are mean and how to stop them. We de-mystify the subject of bullying and empower kids with the knowledge they need to solve their social problems."

"Please continue to support us, as we grow, and help other students and parents understand how serious this problem is," Smajdor said. "Building emotional resilience and self-esteem in these children is the key to preventing these negative behaviors - and Gibbs has been a great source of wisdom to our community."

Parents and educators can register to participate for free at

About Devin's Message Foundation
Devin's Message Foundation was founded by the Kurzdorfer family who lost their 15-year-old son, Devin Kurzdorfer to suicide in 2017. Their mission is to build self esteem, create awareness of bullying and protect children.

About Brooks Gibbs
Brooks Gibbs is a social skills educator who's techniques for conflict resolution have attracted schools around the world. Over 2,500 schools have hired him to speak allowing him to reach 2 million students face-to-face. His viral videos have been translated into 20 languages and amassed more than 200 million views worldwide.

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SOURCE Brooks Gibbs


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