school bullying

UNICEF Report: School Bullying Is Rampant Worldwide

Bullying is worse, not better. But there is hope. 

UNICEF, the United Nations Children's Fund, just released a major report on childhood bullying worldwide. It found that about half of children ages 13 to 15 throughout the globe say they have experienced peer-to-peer violence in and around school. That's 150 million kids. As one UNICEF official who contributed to the report said, "Schools are not as safe as they should be because of bullying, because of corporal punishment by teachers, because of attacks on schools." The report adds that the estimated monetary cost of violence against children in all countries is $7 trillion.

However, the same UNICEF official noted that more children are speaking out against bullying and more teachers are being trained to deal with it. "We have reasons to be optimistic that violence will be recognized as a problem in schools and addressed soon," she said. Self-reported peer violence stands at around 50% in most of the nations studied -- with the U.S. rate slightly lower at 48%. The report is based on data from 122 countries, which are home to 51% of the world's population of children ages 13 to 15.

At the Humanity Project, we see this major report as more proof of the need for increased efforts of all kinds to stop school bullying. We have sensed a growing misunderstanding of the issue in the United States in recent months, a feeling that the serious problem of school bullying is less common now than before. Some folks seem to feel we've won that war. In fact, school bullying is more common today, according to U.S.-based studies and anecdotal reports. These include recent discussions by Humanity Project officials with school administrators, teachers and counselors. LGBTQ students are among the most frequent targets, a school population that is disproportionately bullied. The Southern Poverty Law Center says research consistently shows that “virtually every LGBT student experiences bullying at school.”

The Humanity Project's acclaimed Antibullying Through The Arts and Humanity Club programs have been shown to be effective in helping to curb school bullying -- but in the past several months, we have received somewhat less funding than in 2017 to deliver these free programs to schools and organizations that need them. In light of the new UNICEF report, we are hopeful these funds will be restored soon as more people recognize that bullying hasn't ended in the schools. And that our work as a society to stop school bullying is far, far from over. 

Keeping Your Child Safe Online

Something different for our blog this time ... An information graphic by the folks at KidGuard, a company that provides help for parents to keep their kids safe online. 

Look over that image below carefully if you're a parent (or grandparent). It offers useful information in today's Internet-driven world. To read the full KidGuard article: Click here. 

Sometimes the old adage is true: You can't be too careful ... especially when it comes to protecting your children against the many dangers online. 

Our Fund (and Our New Friends)

POSTED BY: BOB KNOTTS

This week we very proudly announce a major new sponsor for the Humanity Project. We welcome Our Fund to the distinguished list of community partners that you’ll find on our Sponsor page. Our Fund is a foundation that connects the LGBT community in South Florida. They support organizations that improve the lives for people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

Our Fund is a foundation that connects the LGBT community in South Florida. They support organizations that improve the lives of people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender: Visit the Our Fund website. That includes a $5,000 grant to the Humanity Project because we have a nationally acclaimed anti-bullying program, a website created by Gay-Straight Alliance students for socially isolated teens … and now the Humanity Club, which works with middle school student leaders to create an environment of respect for every kid on campus, making their school into a place that welcomes diversity.

Our Fund check presentation to new winners - May 2016

Our Fund check presentation to new winners - May 2016

This type of work is nothing different for the Humanity Project, of course. What’s different is the partnership with Our Fund under their dynamic new leader, David Jobin. David, along with Our Fund’s Grants Committee and Board of Directors, recognizes that the LGBT community benefits enormously from allies such as the Humanity Project, which deliver programs and foster goals that make the world much more welcoming for all. Take our Anti-bullying Through The Arts program, for instance. LGBT students are disproportionately targets of bullying, suffering in large numbers. Eight years of our pre-post testing shows that the Humanity Project program effectively teaches bystander students to help stop school bullying – thereby also reducing the bullying of LGBT students.

The Humanity Project is very proud that we have stood alongside the LGBT community throughout our nearly 11-year history, with or without funding. If you look back at our blogs or social media over that period, you’ll find many posts about the importance of respect for people of all sexual preferences and identities. Even our PeacePage’s introductory animated video mentions this, something we created several years ago: Visit the PeacePage. We were working with Gay-Straight Alliance students for more than a year before winning a large State Farm grant to complete our website for teens, “The Humanity Project 4 Kids”: Visit The Humanity Project 4 Kids.  To the Humanity Project, LGBT equality is the great human rights issue of this era in American history. We are honored to be part of it.

And just as much, we’re honored by Our Fund’s belief in our role within that fight. The LGBT community foundation now joins our other sponsors, including major sponsors, State Farm and Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital … along with Children’s Services Council of Broward County; Google; Barry University; Monarch High School; Dr. David Sharaf and Skin and Cancer Associates and the Center for Cosmetic Enhancement; Blue Gallery and First Impression Printing. We thank them all.

And we know each of these amazing, community-minded organizations will welcome Our Fund to the Humanity Project family, as we do today.