BRUCE BUMSTEAD/BRANDON SUN
Members of Youth Revolution wear masks to make a point during their anti-bullying assembly at Neelin High School on Tuesday.
"It only takes one," was the theme of École secondaire Neelin High School’s second annual anti-bullying awareness assembly on Tuesday.
Organized by Youth Revolution members and Neelin’s Gay-Straight Alliance, students took advantage of the gathering to teach their peers how they can help stop the bullying cycle.
"I hope students can understand that it only takes one person to stop a bullying situation," Grade 10 student and YR member Kendra Maxon said.
"In bullying situations, a lot of kids are unaware of what they could do. They know it’s a problem, they know it’s happening, but they don’t know what to do."
With help from representatives from the Canadian Red Cross’ RespectED violence and abuse prevention program, students were told to show a fellow student who’s being bullied some support.
"A lot of people think that someone else will do it or that someone else will help and they need to know that you can be the one and that you’re able to do it," Grade 11 student and YR member Christina Munchinsky said.
"We’re trying to show that you can help and you will make a difference in that person’s life."
Bullying prevention is something that hits close to home for Munchinsky in particular.
Last year, a friend of hers who was bullied committed suicide.
Munchinsky said that although she was aware her friend was being bullied by her peers, she didn’t know what to do about it.
"I really didn’t know what to do or what resources were out there, so I want to make it known that people are out there to help and there are people who want to help you," she said.
Munchinsky suggests going out of your way to show those who are being bullied that you care.
"Show that someone will miss them if they get to the point where they’re considering suicide," she said.
"They need to know that there’s something to live for."
Today, the Brandon School Division will join students across Canada by participating in Day of Pink, an international anti-bullying campaign.
In 2007, a student from Nova Scotia was bullied by peers for wearing a pink shirt to school, and in response, two students asked their peers to all wear pink to school the next day.
This marked the creation of the popular anti-bullying campaign, Day of Pink, which has now spread across the country.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition April 9, 2014