REbeL Peer Education to be Featured on the TODAY Show

April 28, 2014
Annie Hellweg
(913) 461-5404

Segment on Kansas City-Area Organization Will Air April 30th

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – REbeL, a Kansas City-area student-driven peer education and prevention program designed to address disordered eating and body image concerns, will be featured on NBC’s “Today Show.” The segment will air April 30, 2014 between 8 and 9 a.m. central.

“We could not be more excited to have the opportunity to introduce REbeL and our unique mission to a national audience through this segment on the “Today Show” and to have been asked to participate in the #LoveYourSelfie campaign,” explains Dr. Laura Eickman, founder of REbeL. “REbeL is now more than 5 years old and in that time, we have seen tremendous growth. However, one of our goals is to grow beyond the Kansas City area and this is an exciting step that we expect will generate some interest in other regions.”

The production crew for the “Today Show” came to Kansas City April 16th and 17th to film, spending time with students involved with the organization, board members and leadership to capture the organization’s mission. The show also asked REbeL students to create a PSA for the show’s ongoing #LoveYourSelfie campaign. When the segment airs on April 30, the PSA that REbeL students created will be one of three shown that day, with the others being from a Girl Scout Troop and a Girls, Inc. group.

“Today Show” producers enlisted the expertise of filmmaker Sharon Liese to mentor the students through the process of conceiving, filming and editing the PSA. Liese recently produced the short film “SELFIE” that premiered during the Sundance Film Festival in January 2014 and was featured on the “Today Show.” Liese’s credits include creator and executive producer of the award-winning series “High School Confidential,” filmed at Blue Valley Northwest.

REbeL has been an active part of the Kansas City community, focusing on educating, training and empowering youth, since 2008. The program first educates members on eating disorders and body image issues, emphasizing the importance of health and encouraging students to be introspective – evaluating their own thoughts and feelings about their appearance. Students are then educated on topics including the prevalence of eating and body image issues, the inefficacy of diets, the impact of negative self-talk and media literacy. After continuous training and education over the course of a year, students become the educators and initiators, creating a dissonance-based leadership style and encouraging students to develop their own solutions to problems. Since REbeL was founded in 2008, more than a dozen students who have participated in the program in high school have chosen to pursue degrees and careers aimed at the prevention of eating and body image concerns. The “Today Show” segment will provide an opportunity to introduce the Kansas City-area organization to a national audience. To learn more about the organization, visit or email


About REbeL
REbeL is a peer education program, founded in 2008 by Laura Eickman, Psy.D., that aims to change the definition of beauty and health for individuals of all ages. REbeL was originally piloted as a student group at Blue Valley Northwest High School in Overland Park, Kan., to promote an environment that would build self-esteem and confidence among youth, while combating disordered eating and body image issues that have become increasingly prevalent among young men and women. The organization has since grown into a not-for-profit, launching additional chapters in Kansas area high schools and recently extending their reach to middle schools, recognizing that combating body image issues begins at a young age. In addition to peer education, the organization also hosts the annual Walk to REbeL, along with numerous community events including parent education workshops and classroom presentations. To learn more about REbeL, visit or contact Laura Eickman at; (913)- 814.9209.