Category Archives for Student Leaders
Posted: May 1, 2014
The United National Indian Tribal Youth (UNITY) organization was an early partner in federal efforts to stop bullying. For the past 37 years, our goal has been to foster the spiritual, mental, physical, and social development of American Indian and Alaska Native youth and to help build a strong, unified, and self- reliant Native America through greater youth involvement. Since 2002, we have been working with the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to help educate American Indian youth on bullying prevention and provide them with the tools to be more than a bystander.
We’ve seen the need for prevention efforts evolve over the past several years, specifically in relation to the mascot issue, as many schools and sports teams may accept native names that are actually considered offensive. Our Youth Councils recognized that bullying was a... Continue ReadingPosted in Prevention
Posted: March 19, 2014
An image can be more impactful than hundreds of words – especially when it is used to raise awareness of an important issue. Tifara Brown and her peers used photography to deliver a message about bullying prevention.
Classmates bullied Tifara from elementary school until high school. Tifara is an African-American whose parents raised her in a religiously observant and conservative household. She had to deal with negative stereotypes of African-Americans as being less competent than people of other races. In addition, she was often teased for her religious beliefs and choices.
“I was raised in church, and my faith is a huge part of my life and who I am. I was negatively labeled as a ‘church girl’ for years and bullied about my modest clothing. As an African-American in advanced classes, I was often made to feel weird or unwanted whenever I... Continue Reading
Posted: February 19, 2014
Last weekend, the Human Rights Campaign, in partnership with the National Education Association and American Counseling Association, hosted the first-ever “Time to Thrive” conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. The conference brought together hundreds of educators, school administrators, coaches, social workers, mental health providers, and other youth development staff for a conversation about promoting safety, inclusion, and well-being among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth.
Since taking office, President Obama and his Administration have taken significant steps to advance equality for the LGBT community – including addressing and preventing bullying and harassment of LGBT young people in classrooms and communities around the country. That’s why I was proud to moderate a panel discussion with colleagues from the Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, and Agriculture to highlight some of the bullying prevention and youth empowerment resources available across the federal government. Continue ReadingPosted in Specific Groups
Posted: January 14, 2014
Ben Powell has been performing for others since the age of 3. Now at 19 years old, he enjoys acting, singing, and playing the guitar and trombone. As a high school student, Ben used his talents to impact his community. Specifically, Ben and his peers created a theatrical production to spread awareness about the potential consequences of bullying. With the support of his high school drama teacher, he and other students developed the project:
“Our drama teacher approached us and presented the idea that a message to students may be more effective if their peers delivered it. So, our drama class wrote the script. We also helped design the sets, and were the main actors in the production.”
The group called the project Teen Reality. Similar to a haunted house attraction, audience members walked through the sets to view the different scenes. The plot centered on several youth. These youth included... Continue Reading
Posted: November 6, 2013
The Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention, a group of representatives from across the federal government came up with a great way of having youth and adults partner to hold a dynamic bullying prevention initiative. Continue ReadingPosted in Prevention
Posted: August 30, 2013
Tyler Pascavis wants us to talk about bullying. Tyler, 18, is a native of Illinois, a lifetime member of the 4-H, and an anti-bullying advocate who believes that the only way we can put a stop to bullying is to bring it out in the open. At the school Tyler attended most of his life, Tyler found that the administration was not willing to admit there was a problem with bullying. A high-level school administrator once stated that bullying was not a problem at the school, so students who experienced bullying were left to suffer in silence. As someone who was bullied when he was young, and eventually someone who engaged in bullying himself, Tyler saw firsthand how staying silent on bullying could be as harmful as the bullying itself.
Last April, Tyler had the opportunity to travel to Washington, DC for the 4-H National Conference. There, more than 200 teens from across the... Continue Reading
Posted: July 17, 2013
Hello, I am Anna Holcombe, a “4-Her” from Canon, Ga. I am 15 years old. 4-H Site exit disclaimer is one of the largest youth development programs in the world and it is committed to educating youth on all aspects of bullying. One day at my county 4-H, I was assigned to make a tri-fold on bullying. After a few hours of research, I found myself in awe of all the things I was unaware of before beginning my study. Automatically, I felt the need to stand up for these children and teens.
Last year, the opportunity was presented to me to teach a group of Georgia Cyber Academy children a bullying prevention game. It worked so well that I taught it again to a group of “4-Hers” at a Statewide event last fall. Over the past two years, I have taught many classes about bullying to 4-H groups of all ages. Continue Reading
Posted: June 17, 2013
In Howard County, Maryland, we knew we needed to tackle bullying and cyber-harassment, after a few serious incidents focused our attention and raised awareness of these problems in our community. We examined current laws and discussed whether to push for new state legislation. We looked at how our public schools collect reports of bullying and later, how they handle them.
After much study and discussion, we decided on a multi-faceted approach that brings together a variety of community partners and offers a comprehensive way forward. We announced our plan on May 1 and now, are looking forward to seeing the results.
The plan involves three parts:First, we want to change what people think and feel about bullying. We will develop a social marketing campaign to make sure adults and children know about the severe effects of bullying and what to do when it occurs.... Continue ReadingPosted in Response
Posted: May 8, 2013
The National 4-H Conference is the premier 4-H civic engagement experience for youth across the country. The conference provides an opportunity for 4-H members to increase knowledge, resources, and skills that will empower them to make an impact on their community in a meaningful and genuine way. Continue Reading
Posted: December 12, 2012
Nikki Allinson is a great example of how some students who have been bullied can turn their experience into a passion for helping others. Nikki, currently 23 years old, experienced bullying in middle school and is now an advocate and leader for the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), a non-profit organization working to reduce biased-based bullying in schools.
Nikki’s story begins in middle school, where she said that her peers lacked an understanding about her Jewish heritage. When she asked for a day off from school for religious reasons, kids made fun of her for being Jewish both in person and through instant messenger. When the bullying got worse, she tried to avoid school but eventually told her parents about what was going on. Her parents gave her the support that she needed to get through the year, but the bullying continued... Continue Reading