Sunday, 3 November 2013

Creative ways to deal with bullying

I am a peer mentor and currently work with young people who have housing, violence and other issues to deal with in their daily lives. I am their to support, listen and help where I can. I am also a poet and film-maker I have worked with Actionwork many times helping young people deal with issues of bullying. I find that using various forms of creativity to be the most effective and rewarding of the approaches I have come across. Please see below for a few examples.

8 creative ways to deal with bullying

Whether you’re a bully, bullied or a bystander everyone experiences bullying in one form or another. There are many ways to approach bullying, but today I’m going to focus on what you can do if you’re being bullied.

1) Join a club  / take up a hobby outside school
- Being active releases endorphins which are a natural chemical that makes you feel happy
- You’ll create a network of people around you who can support you, you may even make friends with similar interests
- You’ll learn something new, whether it’s a skill, talent or developing an interest
- It’ll boost your self esteem – this will show and you’ll appear more confident
- It gives you something to look forward to
- Its an opportunity for you to find out what you like and what you don’t. You don’t have to stick with the first club you join, you can try out a whole load of different things

2) Join a club / society in school
It might sound like the last thing you want to do. But it will give you the opportunity to meet more people in your school or at work.  If there’s no clubs then why not set one up? This will introduce you to some like minded people in your school something fun you can do with your time.

3) Contribute to your schools anti-bullying policy
It’s a legal requirement for schools to have an anti-bullying policy. If they don’t have one, work with your school to create one. If they do have one, you can make sure it’s being implemented and help to improve it.

4) Set up a buddy scheme

5) Workshops
Get some external groups to come in and run some anti-bulling and empowerment workshops in your school. This will give you the opportunity to talk to someone if you need to and explore different ways of tackling bullying and promote a zero tolerance attitude to bullying. It might even get the bullies thinking about their behaviour and how it affects other people.

6) Campaign
Set up a campaign within your school and other schools to make anti-bullying training a core part of teacher training. It will give your teachers the tools and knowledge to help you.

7) Advice service
Set up an online anonymous advice system where people can give and ask advice on bullying. You can make it password protected so people have to sign up (for extra safety).

8) Events
Get parents, teachers and students involved in regular events – it could be to fundraise, parents evenings etc. Allow for a section on discussing tackling bullying. You could even suggest an award / points system for implementing and improving the policy. Not only will this promote a positive attitude it will bring parents, students and teachers closer creating a trusting environment where you can all work together.

Sophie Chei - follow me on Twitter  

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