Promoting the anti-bullying message
In November last year, five Youth Scotland affiliated groups from Edinburgh, Glasgow, the Borders, Shetland and Stirling were each awarded £1,000 each by respectme to promote Anti-Bullying Week in their local area.
Brae Youth Club, working in partnership with Shetland Islands Council Youth Services, organised a 'Demolishing the Divides' disco. Attended by over 70 young people from across Shetland, the young people had a great time whilst at the same time promoting the key message that bullying is never acceptable. There was access to a range of information from respectme, and an anti-bullying survey and quiz was distributed, leading up to the event and on the night.
In Glasgow, the project brought together two groups of young carers from opposite ends of the city to meet, talk, share and take part in anti-bullying drama workshops. "It was evident that from youth and drama workers observations that the young people's confidence and skills had improved," said Nicola Moffat, Community Learning Worker. Young people fed back that "it has made me more aware of anti- bullying" and "I have learned cooperation skills".
In Edinburgh 6VT youth group ran a Question Time Session, sponsored by Sarah Boyack MSP at the Scottish Parliament. The project, involving young people aged 14- 21, raised awareness of young people's attitudes and concerns towards bullying behaviour and also helped raise the profile of the issue at a higher strategic level.
"The event gave not only the young people but also the professionals some food for thought," said Fiona Horne, 6VT Development Coordinator, "For those in a position of authority, the session gave them the realisation that not enough has been done on the topic of bullying."
Callander Youth Group promoted awareness of anti-bullying through articles in the local newspaper, workshops, questionnaires and an art competition. The project involved around 80 young people, aged 10 to 18 and also involved the support of a local community police officer.
Helensburgh's Backchat Youth Groups' performed a drama, dance and puppet show, with the underlying message that bullying has no place in society. The young people managed to educate their own community about attitudes to bullying.
"The actual event, when the performances were presented to friends and family was a great success," said the project's youth worker, Michael Yeomans, "A full house and most importantly, feedback from those attending, especially parents, suggested that they had all learnt something about bullying."
Congratulations to all the groups involved in this project, and many thanks to respectme for their support. Keep your eyes peeled on the Youth Scotland website for more anti-bullying opportunities this year.
If you are keen to explore anti-bullying or community-safety focused work in your own group, you might be interested in the new Safe in My Place resource - an activity pack developed in partnership with Network Rail's No Messin' initiative to support workers to introduce themed work around issues of community safety.
Order Safe in My Place using the resources order form.