Happy Thursday! I hope you’re having a good week so far. I recently received an email that I wanted to share with all of you. Megan, a 15 year old from Canada, is a super talented girl who writes and records all her own music. She contacted me last week asking me to share this song and video she recorded with a storyline about bullies and bullying. The best part about Megan and her efforts is that while she’s obviously taking a strong stance against bullying with her song lyrics, she is also impacting, inspiring, and encouraging TONS of young people (as per the comments on her YouTube video and Facebook page), which is what this website is all about. Please read her email below and take a few minutes to watch her video, like her Facebook page, or leave her a comment here. She’s one remarkable young lady and I’m honored to share her efforts against bullying on this website!
Hi, I’m 15 and wrote this because of a personal experience. I did the video myself too. I was not going to let them break me. If it shows that it bothers you, they’ll just do it more. I hope my song will help those that are starting to feel torn down — to rise up! Don’t let anyone make you a victim. They aren’t worth it.
I hope my song will give other kids the power “to look right over their heads”. Because in the end bullying is really about power. Why give anyone that satisfaction over you! I didn’t, and I won’t and I hope more and more kids don’t either.
“I founded The Kris Snary Project in May of 2011 after Kris passed away. We were both bullied but had different outcomes.
I want to help people avoid his result. The world needs more love.
Talk to me at facebook.com/thekrissnaryproject or on Twitter @CaseyInRealLife”
And Casey’s Testimony:
I met Kris while going to college in a small South-Eastern Ontario city. We had a few mutual friends and it didn’t take long before we were able to talk openly to each other about certain things. Just for the heck of it, I used to call him my gay best friend and I was one of his straight best friends. After Kris moved back to his hometown, we lost touch a lot of the time, something I kick myself for almost every day. Coming home to see his name in Facebook obituary-style statuses on October 17th of 2010 was one of the worst experiences many of us here will never forget.
The Kris Snary Project was formed months later in an attempt to take on bullying and suicide issues while integrating Kris’ favourite thing in the entire world which was music. In May of 2011, four bands (The Dead Sparrows, Unbound, Fingers X’d and Stealing Patience) gathered at our local pub and we fundraised with a concert for a bursary created in Kris’ name (The Kristofur Edward Snary Memorial Bursary).
The video served as an attempt to reach out to friends, family and strangers alike to try and create a connection with them whether they knew Kris or they were bullied themselves or knew someone else going through something similar. There are two versions; the orignal featuring “Invincible” by Hedley and the newer version featuring “All I Know” by Toronto’s Faint Reflection.
Up next, we have a Toronto rock band, Riots and Revelry, going into the recording studio to create a single for the project in order to keep that musical connection while still remembering why the project was started in the first place; Kris.
I can’t tell anyone at this point how to fix the bullying issue nationwide. That being said, after the experiences of the past year, I will say this:
You can tell a child not to touch a stove in case it is too hot but they will likely continue to do it behind your back until they get burnt. The same thing goes for bullying. You can tell someone not to bully another but they will likely continue when you’re not looking until they feel the burn.
After such a great post in which Casey talks about The Kris Snary Project, her last sentence really made me stop and think. I would gather that the majority of people in this world know it is not okay to bully others and that it’s not okay to be mean to others, but people still do and they still are. So really, why does it continue? Are there not enough consequences for people who bully others? While laws are getting tougher, should lawmakers start cracking down on individuals who bully/harass/torment others no matter where the bullying takes place, who it offends, or what the bullying entails? Does the fact that Casey’s friend was gay change the degree of punishment or change the way people feel punishment should be handled- does it make the ‘making fun’ of someone okay? I certainly hope not, but are there people out there who would disagree with me? I’m sure there are. Let’s continue to stand up for what’s right and let’s continue to stand up against bullying no matter WHO the bully or victim is or what they themselves stand for.
I would love to be part of this whole website just because I want to inspire kids to stop bullying. I’ve been bullied before and I might know how those of you who are getting bullied feel… Its the worst feeling ever, you feel like you just don’t belong. I was bullied in grade four! Just because I didn’t know how to speak english, I just had moved from Portugal to Canada… I only had 3 friends, but those 3 friends were loyal! They tried to talk me into telling a teacher, but I kept saying no because I thought I would get hit by the bully. I thought I’d be beaten up after school… But one day I got fed up and told a teacher who then went to talk to the principal. My friends saved my life because at one point I was already cutting my wrists… I didn’t feel the pain. But getting bullied made me a stronger person!! It is estimated that over 160,000 children miss school everyday because they fear of getting bullied. Bullying occurs in school playgrounds every 7 minutes and once every 25 minutes in class. Thats way to many cases!! Bullying needs to be stopped now. There are kids becoming suicidal just because they don’t feel in, they don’t feel welcome to the group… They feel like they shouldn’t even be here. Kids who are getting bullied also turn to cutting themselves, that is NOT healthy at all!! As for anti-bullying programs, the programs at schools don’t really help. I mean, they have one presentation a year and thats it. The schools need more presentations about bullying… The presentations now a days just aren’t really affective. If you know anyone who is getting bullied, help them out. You can always take a few minutes to talk to them, make friends with them, make them feel welcome. Talk them into talking to a teacher at school or if its not happening at school, then talk them into talking to his/her parents!!! I made my video to show that you might not really know someone… You might know their name, or simply how old they are or what school they go to, but its certain that you don’t know their stories! Stop bullying now!! Please.
Jennifer is a 15 year old girl from Toronto, Canada. She has made that YouTube video to help other kids who have been victims of bullying. Jennifer gives GREAT advice to both kids who are being bullied and to kids who are bystanders– if you see someone being bullied, please help them out. Tell the bully to knock it off or take the initiative and tell a teacher or another adult (even anonymously if you have to). If you’re afraid to do it yourself, get a bunch of friends to do go tell a teacher with you. Believe it or not, you could save a life by just using your voice to stick up for others.
Please check out her amazing YouTube channel here and you can follow her on Twitter here :) Thanks, Jennifer!!
Hi, I'm Jessica Simmons! The mission of My Kindness Counts is to encourage young people from around the nation to work together to brainstorm better, more positive ways to address bullying in our communities. Interested in sharing what you're doing to help others? Send me an email!Follow @Kindness_Counts