The Matthew Shepard Foundation's
"Erase Hate" Project is the heart of the organization's work
and mission. Judy and Dennis Shepard created the Foundation shortly
after Matthew's death, with a goal to "Replace Hate with
Understanding, Compassion & Acceptance".
Programs of the Matthew Shepard
Foundation "Erase Hate" Project include:
Legacy of Matthew Shepard"
Through her national speaking program, Judy Shepard shares
Matthew's values of respect and dignity for others. She is determined to
make a difference - to do what she can to ensure that no other parent
will have to endure what she has. Judy speaks to audiences nationwide
about what they can do to make their schools and communities more
accepting of everyone, regardless of sex, national origin, race,
religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or
expression. This program has been presented to over one million people
at colleges, high schools, universities, churches, businesses and
Crimes Legislative Program
Since 1998, the Matthew Shepard Foundation has been at the forefront of
the effort for Congressional passage of the Local Law Enforcement
Enhancement Act (LLEEA), more commonly known as the Hate Crimes Bill.
From speaking to the Senate Judiciary Committee to regularly lobbying
Congress, Judy Shepard has been a leader in advocating and pushing for
this important protection for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender
community. In addition, the Foundation continues to support and aid in
the passage of statewide Hate Crimes legislation.
Bear, Big Dreams"
This Pre-K-12 educational program teaches the values of respect
for all people and acceptance of individual differences. The life of
Matthew Shepard is chronicled in the storybook, "Small Bear, Big
Dreams". Within its pages, teddy bears celebrate Matthew's life and
aspirations as well as his struggles. A vision of hope and the
celebration of diversity are central to this touching story. The
educational program includes an activity guide, teacher/parent's guide,
and an assortment of unique teddy bears that illustrate the value of
diversity. A pro-active approach is taken in the lessons to teach
compassion, acceptance and respect; as well as promote the promise that
one person can make a difference. National distribution is slated for
the Spring of 2007.
"ERASE HATE" PURPLE WRISTBANDS
The 'Erase Hate' Wristband program is one of
the Matthew Shepard Foundation most visible programs. Schools,
communities and individuals around the country purchase the
wristbands as a way to engage individuals in the discussion of
"Replacing Hate with Understanding, Compassion and
If you are interested in receiving wristbands
for your schools, faith based groups, families or friends,
please visit the Matthew
Shepard On-line Store.
Were are you Erasing Hate?
Show us where you are "Erasing Hate' by submitting pictures
of you, your families and friends wearing the 'erase hate'
Submission can be sent to
Erase Hate Contact Page
Please include the picture, your name and location. All
submissions are subject to approval.