Unite Against Bullying on Unity Day, Oct. 10 Get Involved, Winnemucca!

Unite Against Bullying on Unity Day, Oct. 10
Join PACER and AVA-CASA and “Make It Orange and Make It End”
During National Bullying Prevention Month
As a show of support to children who are bullied, PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center and Advocates for Victims of Abuse- Tri-County Court Appointed Special Advocates invites everyone to wear orange on Unity Day, Wednesday, Oct. 10, during National Bullying Prevention Month.
Bullying can happen anywhere. Many children and teens are regular victims of bullying, which can lead to serious emotional scarring and problems with the victim's self-esteem and self-image. Correcting these behaviors before they start or get out of hand are important for parents and educators to keep in mind. In this article we are discussing the facts on bullying and how you can watch for warning signs in victims of bullying as well as in children who might be bullies themselves.
Types of bullying:
  • Verbal. This type of bullying usually involves name calling and or teasing
  • Social. Spreading rumors, intentionally leaving others out of activities on purpose, breaking up friendships are all examples of social bullying.
  • Physical. This traditional form of bullying involves hitting, punching, shoving and other acts of intention physical harm.
  • Cyberbullying. This method of bullying involves using the Internet, texting, email and other digital technologies to harm others.
“Nearly one-third of all school-aged children are bullied each year - upwards of 13 million students,” said Julie Hertzog, director of PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center, which sponsors Unity Day and founded National Bullying Prevention Month in 2006. “We need to show these students they are not alone. By joining together and wearing orange on Unity Day, we can send a national, unified message that bullying will no longer be accepted in this society.”
While we hear so much about bullying in schools and between youths, AVA-CASA Director's Rebecka Swatman and Chelle Robinson point out how bullying isn't just a youth concern. Parents and adults also deal with bullying in their communities and workplaces. One would think that as people mature and progress through life, certain behaviors would change and mature as well.. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Sadly, adults can be bullies, just as children and teenagers can be bullies. While adults are more likely to use verbal bullying as opposed to physical bullying, the fact of the matter is that adult bullying exists. The goal of an adult bully is to gain power over another person, and make himself or herself the dominant adult. They try to humiliate victims, exclude them, and damage their reputations.
Whether it be a child or adult, how do you know if someone is being bullied and what do we look for?
Facts on bullying:
  • Imbalance of power. Typically those who engage in bully-like behaviors use their strength, popularity or power to harm, control or manipulate others. They will usually target those who are weaker in size or may have a difficult time defending themselves.
  • Intent to cause harm. A bully is a person who does not do things by accident. The bully intends to physically or emotionally injure a person or group of persons.
  • Repetition. Typically incidents of bullying are not a one-time thing. Bullies target the same person or group over and over again.
It is important for parents to discuss the facts on bullying with their children to help teach them how to watch out for bullying and to avoid being bullied. There are several signs a person can look for when evaluating if an individual is a victim of bullying.
  • Comes home with unexplained injuries or with damaged or missing clothing or other belongings
  • Has change in eating habits
  • Makes excuses not to go to school or work
  • Has fewer friends
  • Feels helpless
  • Talks about suicide
  • Acts out of character
  • Avoids certain places or playing outside alone
  • Feels like they are not good enough
  • Has trouble sleeping
  • Blames themselves for their problems
The facts on bullying also provide information on what types of signs to look for in children who might be bullying others.
  • Becomes frequently violent
  • Has trouble controlling anger
  • Is manipulative and controlling of others and situations
  • Is quick to blame others
  • Does not accept responsibility for their actions
  • Needs to win or be the best at everything
Understanding these warning signs can help prevent everyone from becoming a victim of a bully. Counseling or therapy are good methods in helping to treat a child who exhibits symptoms of bullying. Children who are victims may also need some kind of support or counseling to help resolve underlying issues of emotional feelings of inadequacy. Children who are confident and have higher self-esteem are less likely to fall prey to the attacks of bullying.
There are many ways to support the cause:
Wear a Celebrity-Designed, Customized or Official T-Shirt
PACER is making it easy this year for everyone to wear orange – either a design of their own, one created by a celebrity or one created for them. Official National Bullying Prevention Month T-shirts for Unity Day will be available on the PACER website for a limited time. The website also features a section so anyone can customize an orange shirt. Individual or group orders can be made for any of the T-shirts, and all proceeds support the work of PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center, a nonprofit that provides free online bullying prevention resources. Look for details and ordering information at www.PACER.org/bullying/nbpm/unity-day-t-shirt.asp
Share the Unity Message
In addition to wearing orange, people can update their Facebook status to the Unity Day message at PACER.org/Bullying, visit the Unity Day Facebook page to “Share” and “Attend” the Unity Day Event, and post pictures of anyone wearing orange to PACER’s Unity Day Facebook page. Students can also take part by distributing orange “Unity” ribbons and writing “Unity” on their hands or school binders. During Unity Day’s debut in 2011, thousands of students, co-workers and even television personality Ellen DeGeneres spread the message of support by wearing orange, the official color of bullying prevention.
“This is a great way to make a powerful statement,” said Paula F. Goldberg, PACER Center’s executive director. “Anyone can join with us to “Make It Orange and Make It End.”
PACER is also partnering with Facebook on a new “school event toolkit” that will help students organize their own bullying prevention event. It’s coming soon to PACER.org/Bullying.
PACER originated National Bullying Prevention Month in 2006. National partners of the month include the National Education Association, the American Federation for Teachers, the National PTA, and many others. Facebook is partnering with PACER by posting information about Unity Day and other PACER activities on its safety, educator, and privacy pages during October.
PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center provides creative and interactive resources that are designed to benefit all students, including students with disabilities. It offers educators, students, families and individuals the tools they need to address bullying. For more information, visit PACER.org/Bullying or call 952-838-9000.
About AVA-CASA: Based in Winnemucca, NV, AVA-CASA works to to empower those victimized by abuse and/or violence through advocacy and crisis intervention and to raise awareness in the community about the cause, impact, and prevention of relationship abuse, sexual violence, child abuse and neglect, and bullying. Free self-defense classes and are offered monthly, kids classes and anti-bullying classes are also offered free to the public.
Tri-County CASA supports and promotes volunteer advocacy to protect the best interests of abuse and neglected children in Humboldt, Lander, and Pershing Counties in Nevada. Interested parties ages 21 and over are encouraged to apply. Male volunteers are especially needed at this time to mentor and support male youths in Winnemucca. Must have a valid Nevada ID and pass state and federal background checks. To apply, please complete application at www.humboldtava.com , email humboldtava@sbcglobal.net or call 304-7007 or 623-2328 for more information.
Don't be a victim, become a survivor!
About PACER Center: Based in Minnesota, PACER Center is a national parent center serving all youth, with a special emphasis on children with disabilities. Learn more at PACER.org or call 952-838-9000; 888-248-0822 (national toll free). Paula F. Goldberg is the Executive Director of PACER Center.