10 minutes for a lifetime

This week is Anti-bullying Week – it is coordinated by the Anti-Bullying Alliance. The theme this year is ‘Power for Good’.

I can hear you wondering how you can get involved – here’s how:

  • If you are a school or college, register for Anti-Bullying Week updates by joining the free ABA School or College Network. (Time needed: 1 minute)
  • Download the Anti-Bullying Week logos and share on your websites and newsletters. (Time needed: 1 minute)
  • Have a look through the free Anti-Bullying Week resources . (Time needed: 30 minutes, or 5 minutes or however long you want it to take)
  • Join the Anti-Bullying Week social media campaign – upload our Twibbon, share our pledge and tell us how you will use your Power for Good this Anti-Bullying Week.(Time needed: 5 minutes)
  • Raise much needed funds for the work of the Anti-Bullying Alliance by dressing up as a hero of your choice!
  • Take action now and contact your MP to ask them to support Anti-Bullying Week! (Time needed: 3 minutes)
  • Teach your children to accept and love their peers by educating them about disadvantage, disability, poverty, self-esteem.

pledge_postSo, to do all of the above (excluding the obvious such as running an event and reading material) takes approx 10 minutes. 10 minutes to make some of your friends take notice by sharing the campaign or using the twibbon. 10 minutes to take away the devastating effects of bullying and change someones life. All you have to do is make one person aware.

I was bullied in school, for years; but i had a very loud voice, a family that never let me fall, I stood up for myself and it made me strong. Think of all the people who don’t have support. The ones that suffer in silence, the ones that are so emotionally abused they end up believing their bullies. Think of the children who don’t have a voice. The ones who are made to think they are not ‘normal’, the ‘weird’ ones, the ‘outcasts’. Think of the people that choose suicide over life; Bullied victims are 7% to 9% more likely to consider suicide according to a study by Yale University.

The are people, living in this world that are so emotionally, physically, psychologically abuse by others that they want to stop being alive. They want to stop breathing, sleeping, eating, love, miss, cry, laugh because of bullying.

The UK Annual Bullying Survey 2016 found that:

15064926_10154625430215030_61308079_o 1.5 million young people (50%) have been bullied within the past year.
• 145,800 (19%) of these were bullied EVERY DAY.
• People who have been bullied are almost twice as likely to bully others.
• Twice as many boys as girls bully (66% of males vs. 31% females).
• 57% of female respondents have been bullied, 44% of male respondents and 59% of respondents who identified as trans have been bullied.
• 24% of those who have been bullied go on to bully.
• Based on their own definition 14% of young people admit to bullying somebody, 12% say they bully people daily.
• 20% of all young people have physically attacked somebody.
• 44% of young people who have been bullied experience depression.
• 41% of young people who have been bullied experience social anxiety.
• 33% of those being bullied have suicidal thoughts.

You can read the whole report here.

More autism-specific stats in December 2015 showed that parents of over 900 students in the UK with children suffering from aspects of Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC) revealed that 61% of those asked said their child was being bullied because of their autism related condition.

A small fraction of stories that came to light in 2016:

David Wooby was discovered in February by his parents with a ligature round his neck. His father David Wooby told the inquest he believed his son had been in a “spiral” of depression due to bullying and had purposely taken his own life.

Harry Gosling,12, suffers from autism and ADHD and his father, Graeme Hunt, claims he has been targeted by fellow year eight pupils, leaving him suffering from seizures after being ‘tied to a tree and punched’ by bullies.

A Tiverton schoolgirl with special needs and her two sisters have changed primary schools because of bullying problems.

Robert Howard was bullied, and hit in face with traffic cone.

What’s 10 minutes if it means saving a life?