To day is May 1st and has been chosen as THE day to have a big push to end bullying.
Everyone knows that I have been a victim of bullying and this year I have the opportunity to speak out against bullying. Today I got to be a guest on a local TV program called Talk Local Waterloo Region where I was among many guests speaking about the subject of bullying. It was a great experience I got to hear about initiatives that I didn’t know about.
WRPS (Waterloo Regional Police Services) have been active in going to schools and talking about bullying for years. This year they have a contest called “Stand Up Speak Out” where kids up to 18 years of age are able to submit their best anti-bullying message. They’re 3 categories Video, Word, and Art and kids are allowed to enter as many times as they wish but can only win once per category. There will be 3 winners in each category and I have been invited to be a judge. I did get a sneak peak at some of the entries and they are AMAZING it’s going to be hard for us to narrow it down to 3 winners per category!!
The other program being run actively in the area is being put on by Waterloo Region Crime Prevention Council. The project is called THINK described bye WRCPC as “…an initiative of the Crime Prevention Council that encourages people of all ages and backgrounds to ask five key questions before they text, tweet, email, or post to Facebook” The five key questions tie in to the word THINK: T= is it True?, H= is it Hurtful?, I= is it Illegal?, N= is it Necessary? K= is it Kind? Such a simple concept but one that has a powerful message. I find that these types of community programs have the highest rate of success. They are giving out these blue elastic bands with this acronym printed on one side which are designed to go on one’s smartphone. From what I have read and heard they are doing really well with this.
A lot of these programs work because it’s peer-to-peer. We all know that as adults telling kids what to do goes in one ear and right out the other but when we get kids engaged it has the power to make all the difference. The other issue is that sometimes the adults are the issue and it’s the kids we are depending on to teach their parents that bullying like drunk driving needs to be a thing of the past.
This program was aired on local TV and not broadcast online so I will contact the station and order a copy so that I can post on my blog at a later date. The program was really well done not just my segment but the whole show was filled with really great guests.
On an unrelated note my Toronto Maple Leafs are in the playoffs for the first time in NINE years!! that’s just crazy. They pointed out tonight on the 6pm news that 9 years ago Twitter and Facebook didn’t exist….I really had to give that some thought to realize they were right!! Right now as I write this my team is losing 4-1 even though they scored the first goal. We are hoping they can turn this around because I would hate for them to get knocked out of the series in the first round.