As a parent, as I’m sure many of you are, one of my worst fears is to find that my children are either being bullied, or being a bully themselves. I often wonder how we would deal with discovering either of these scenarios. In a world where bullying can take on many new and different forms, it concerns me that not enough parents, guardians, families and friends would know what to do for the best.
Although sad that such an awareness campaign has to exist in the first place, it’s also reassuring and useful to know that the National Bullying Prevention Center run the National Bullying Prevention Month throughout the month of October with lots of information and support readily available to help anyone who may need it.
Established by PACER, a center for parent training and information for families and youth with disabilities, the initial campaign was designed to raise awareness of the long lasting effects that bullying has on many children and young people and to change the perception that bullying is a part of growing up that cannot be challenged. Collaborating with education-based organizations such as the National PTA, the American Federation of Teachers and the National Education Association they provide schools, parents and students with the educational resources and support to better respond to bullying behavior.
Throughout the month the campaign aims to work at a grassroots level with local schools, community groups, young people and families to address any issues faced by them, signpost to organisations who may be able to offer support, educate youngsters about the effects of bullying and promote kindness, acceptance and inclusion. On a higher level they also work with news and media outlets encouraging them to promote their message and cause as well as communicating with education and public policy leaders about the role they play in bullying prevention.
The dedicated website has many ways you can show your support – be it as an individual, school or community, as well as offering ideas for activities for all school ages, a really useful toolkit advising of lesson plans and details of special events planned across the nation.
Now a nationally recognised awareness campaign with support from Facebook, Disney, Instagram, CNN, TLC and Yahoo! Kids and many, many more organisations this is a campaign that should be embraced by all within our communities.