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. We organized this national youth engagement effort to combat bullying and create a culture of kindness and respect for and with our nation’s youth. We heard from teens that they would like the federal government to include youth more directly in anti-bullying efforts. The month of October was Bullying Prevention Awareness Month and to celebrate it this year, we invited youth organizations and their youth leaders to hold bullying prevention educational and social events coast to coast.
Participating organizations had access to two toolkits, one located on www.stopbullying.gov and the other from the National Organization for Youth Safety. They received a list of local action oriented bullying prevention activities that youth could choose from to implement in their communities (ie. a rap contest, a poster contest, a 5K run, etc.), a link to Cartoon Network’s Stop Bullying: Speak Up bullying prevention documentary, and thought provoking discussion questions pertaining to the video.
The guidance questions asked kids to think about issues such as:
- What the roles of teachers and counselors should be in addressing bullying;
- What bystanders can do when they see bullying, and;
- How friends deal with other friends being bullied.
Youth were encouraged to share their local efforts via the Stopbullying.gov Tumblr site and Cartoon Network’s Stop Bullying Speak Up Facebook page.
The Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention recognize that youth have an important role in stopping bullying and creating a positive peer culture. The goals for these social and educational events are to empower youth to create change in their local communities, to have meaningful conversations about related issues and to have fun and feel a sense of connectedness around a positive and important effort. Please let us know about your local bullying prevention effort through our Tumblr site: http://stopbullying-blog.tumblr.com/.