Dance for a Difference

October 22nd, 2012 | Posted by Jessica in Thoughts | Your Voices - (1 Comments)

Meet Hanna, a beautiful 13-year-old 8th grade student from New York.  I came across Hanna’s anti-bullying/suicide awareness video on the NY Anti-Bully Movement page. Hanna impressed me on many levels (her courage, her ability to speak out, her ability to find ways to help other people, etc.), but what impressed me most was how articulately she was able to explain the situation of bullying, her frustrations with how the school handled her mother’s complaints, the consequences bullying had on her, AND furthermore, how she thinks our schools can better handle bullying.  Hanna has created an AMAZING website called, DanceForADifference to help children and teens who are being bullied and/or are feeling like they may want to hurt themselves.  Thanks so much for sharing your story with us, Hanna, and please check out her website!

Hello, I’m Hanna a 13 year old 8th grade student. I’ve been through more than most kids at my age could even think of. I’ve been bullied since 6th grade. Would you have been able to tell before I told you? Most kids don’t realize what effects bullying has on people. Some kid’s runaway, shut everybody else out, turn to hurting themselves or even attempt suicide such as I tried to do. Through my past experiences I have come to realization that I have the ability to help other children my age who have been affected by bullying.

I’ve been bullied since 6th grade. I did everything I possibly could do to try and fit in. Including cutting my hair, dying it, changing my style of music and clothes, and changing the way I interacted with my family. These girls who bullied me did things like taking my gym clothes and putting them in the toilet…They made up rumors about me and made it impossible for me to make friends. School was supposed to be a place that I could go to, to learn. It was my favorite place to be, until bullies took that away. It was a battle to get myself to go to school each day knowing that throughout the day it would be a struggle. As a result of bullying I attempted suicide less than a month ago. I spent four days and three nights in the hospital. The doctors told me I was going to die the first night. They pumped my stomach and I needed to drink liquid charcoal. My family was by my side the whole time, my huge loud Italian family mushed into a tiny hospital room as they cried and blamed themselves for my attempt. It was never their fault, it was the bullies. My mother contacted the school on several occasions, and the school did absolutely nothing about the situations. They put it off consistently as if I was not as important as other students. I feel like it took my suicide incident to show them that I was there and to really pay attention to bullying in my old school. I now attend a different school in a totally different district. I am now doing several things to help raise awareness about bullying and suicide. I have made videos sharing my story and also sharing awareness of suicide prevention. I made a website danceforadifference.webs.com and started an organization Dance For A Difference that helps children’s teens and young adults who are feeling suicidal or have been bullied. I’m beginning to plan a walk spring of 2013 at the moment a date has not been set, but definitely a Saturday in March or April weather permitting. I’m trying to raise awareness about bullying and suicide prevention because I believe god kept me here today because he has great for me, plans of me helping other people who have gone through things that I have also dealt with. I believe that we as a nation have the ability to make a change in our schools by making our schools address every single case and or complaint about students being bullied, and harassed, and making a school take immediate action. Having severe consequences, not just lunch detention will also help. School’s need to take bullying very seriously, not just ignore the situation until a student does an serious action and gets recognized.

I decided to incorporate dance into my decision to stand up and speak out for the victims who can’t do it themselves. The video below is me, feel free to watch comment like or share. Thanks!

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Happy Saturday, everyone! Today’s post is featuring Lexie, an 18 year old girl from Pennsylvania. Lexie is the founder of “The Official Fight Against Bullying”/(FAB) and also runs a Twitter account, @UsBullyFighters. Inspired by her own experiences being bullying, Lexie is dedicated to putting an end to bullying and helping people dealing with it.  After following Lexie on Twitter, I visited her website (http://www.theofficialfightagainstbullying.com/) and could not have been more impressed by her passion, effort, and dedication to this cause. Through our emails back and forth, I asked for her thoughts on the bullying that’s going on in our communities and problems with some of the anti-bullying efforts. This is what she had to say: “I think that bullying programs currently are not effective enough because nothing is happening to change the constitution or enact an official bullying law/act. I like them because they spread the word but I think that WE have to be chasing the citizens at this point, not having the citizens come search for us. We need to reach out.”

Lexie made this video to be shared with all of you. Please take a few minutes to watch it & listen to her speak on what has inspired her throughout this journey and what her future goals are with The Official Fight Against Bullying.

 

 

I encourage you to leave Lexie a comment below with your thoughts on what she has been through and/or what she is doing now to combat bullying.

Please check out Lexie’s website here and her Twitter account here! :D

 

 

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The Butterfly Project

March 1st, 2012 | Posted by Jessica in Thoughts | Your Voices - (3 Comments)

Hi, everyone! I’d like to introduce Crystal, a 16 year old girl from Virginia. Crystal is the founder of Butterfly Project, which aims to help teens who are suffering from self harm. In the post below, Crystal will explain why she began Butterfly Project, but in short, she encourages people who cut to draw butterflies on their wrists instead. I think it’s really cool that Crystal is doing her part and using her time to help people suffering from self harm. You can follow Crystal on Twitter here @Buttefproject and/or visit her website, Butterfly Project! Thanks so much for doing all that you do, Crystal!

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I’m the founder for Butterfly Project. Butterfly Project is a non profit organization that provides help for teens who are suffering self injury. I have been bullied. And I’m still getting bullied today. Bullying is NEVER okay. I hope that one day Butterfly Project will be successful and create a treatment center not just for teens, but for children and adults. Everyone goes through hard times. But self injury just makes it worse! Who inspired me to start Butterfly Project? Demi Lovato! 2 years ago, I heard that she went into a treatment center. I was shocked! She is a STRONG woman. I believe that EVERYONE should be friends and get along. No one should cut themselves. EVERYONE should stay strong.

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