According to Bullying.org, every seven minutes someone is bullied on a playground in Canada. That is an incredibly disturbing statistic! Bullying is demoralizing, lowers self-esteem and has led to shootings and suicides in Canada and around the world. Bullying happens in many different forms but its purpose is to make someone else feel bad on purpose. Through awareness and education Canadians can continue to take a stand against bullying.
As you probably already know, yesterday was Pink Shirt Day, but did you know that the original idea for Pink Shirt Day grew from the actions of 2 high school boys? That’s right, just a couple of kids who took a stand and started a movement! When a 9th grade student was bullied for wearing a pink shirt on the first day of school, these 2 boys said enough is enough! They purchased 50 pink shirts and asked their classmates to join them in their stand against bullying, a movement they called the “Sea of Pink”. If that’s not inspiring, I don’t know what is!
I think that Pink Shirt Day has such a great message because it emphasizes thatstanding up to bullying is something we all need to do together. When I was in school I was told that if I was bullied I needed to stand up for myself, but nobody really mentioned anything about taking a stand for others. Bullying.org has a whole list of suggestions for what to do if you’re being bullied, as well as suggestions on what to do if you know someone else is being bullied. Please, give these a read and share them with your kids! According to a study by the University of Guelph, 20% of school-age kids report being bullied at least once each week, so there’s a pretty good chance your child knows one of them.
It is so incredibly important to teach our children not to bully and to take a stand against those that do, but I feel like this still leaves bullying as the focus of what we teach them. Let’s put a more positive spin on things and teach our kids the right way to treat people.
Focusing on kindness can change your community and your life. There are so many different ways you can inject a little sunshine into other people’s lives. Any kind action, whether it’s a smile, volunteering, or helping your neighbour with their yard work, has the power to transform lives! If you’re looking for ideas, here’s a great list of kindness ideas that you can filter by time commitment, cost and category. There are endless opportunities to show a little kindness. Brainstorm some with your kids; it will help them learn to see that every day holds opportunities to bring positivity to others. Just think, one small act of kindness from you could make a world of difference to someone else.
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