Take a Stand Against Bullying in Your Community
While bullying must be prevented each time it occurs, the sad reality is that not all instances are reported, or dealt with. Awareness and support are key to ensure that all children feel safe in schools and neighborhoods.
PACER, a program funded by the US Department for Education decided in 2006 to designate October as National Bullying Prevention Month. You don’t have to wait until October to take a stand against bullying but here’s what you can do to show your support:
You can coordinate a Run, Walk or Roll Against Bullying event in your own community. There’s a free toolkit available at the PACER website (www.pacer.org) to help plan your event. The wonderful thing is that these events can have as few as 25 or as many as 2500 participants.
As PACER states on its website, the events have a three-pronged goal:
Supportive: A time for students, parents and communities to show they care
Educational: An opportunity to provide information on how to address bullying
Memorable: An event that inspires and makes a difference
Ideas to host an event are simple and can be incorporated with routine activities. Here’s what you can do:
- During school at the track. Invite a guest speaker, then have each student sign the “Together against bullying – united for kindness, acceptance and inclusion” pledge.
- On a Saturday at a community park, set up tables with activities for kids and a photo booth. After the event, feature music by local performers.
- Request a free, colorful, and informative flyer that outlines the creative resources, outreach activities, and opportunities available from PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center. Distribute at your local event, activity, or fundraiser. To order, email email@example.com; provide your name, organization, address, information on the event/activity/fundraiser where you’ll be using them, and the quantity being requested.
- Take the pledge to support others who have been hurt or harmed, treat others with kindness, be more accepting of people’s differences and help include those who are left out.
- Submit a video, story, poem, artwork, or audio clip expressing how you feel about bullying, how you think it affects students and schools, what you have done to prevent bullying, or what others can do to prevent bullying. Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Unity Day — Make it orange and make it end! This is a day scheduled every October in which schools and communities can send one orange message that we are together against bullying and united for kindness, acceptance, and inclusion.