12 Mar 2013

To This Day - A Poem about Bullying

This short emotion fuelled TED Talk by poet Shane Koyczan that has recently gone viral is a powerful live recital of his poem that gets to the heart of what it is like for young people to be "young and different". It brings bullying into the foreground and despite it being a personal story of bullying and survival, it will and has resonated with many.

Shane's heartfelt poem "To This Day", flits between hilarious and haunting and is supported by amazing crowd sourced animation from 80 illustrators, and a live violinist. Very powerful and well worth taking a few minutes out of your day to watch.

This talk is for anyone who is being or has been bullied, or is a bully, or knows someone who fits either of these profiles.

Follow Shane on Twitter

What affect does Social Media / Technology have on bullying?

A lot.

Bullying is a serious issue, and with more and more young people having instant access to the web and Social Media, cyber bullying (like any bullying) can have serious consequences. With Social Media especially, people can't hide, and bullying often doesn't stop when school finishes - it steps up.

Below are a couple of interesting and horrifying infographics I found on We Inspire Futures . Let's not forget the numbers below are the numbers from a small source of people that admitted they were being bullied. What I find even more harrowing from the stats below is one of the biggest problem with bullying is the victim (out of fear), not wanting to admit there is an issue.

Also, let's not forget bullying isn't just something that may or may not have happened back in a persons school days. It can happen at anytime in a persons life - at work, in a sports team, at home etc.

What can we do to help?

Generally - Be perceptive of other peoples feelings. You may think an off-the-cuff comment is nothing and your intent was never to hurt, however it can have devastating affects. You never know someones else situation, and your comment may be the catalyst for something bigger. 'Think' before you speak.

Get help - Wherever you are there are tons of great associations / websites / support networks that are doing amazing work to help victims. Just google and find these associations near you. 

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