Area youth and adult leaders will gather on Saturday, October 5th for an anti-bullying and cyberbullying seminar at the Global Studios, 8151 S. South Chicago Avenue.
Organized by the Bullying Prevention and Awareness, Inc., (BPA) the day-long seminar will seek to support and empower youth in standing-up against bullying. The seminar is the group’s third major bullying prevention effort, and it is partly sponsored by the Chicago Fund for Safe and Peaceful Communities. In 2017, BPA’s first anti-bullying conference was held at National Louis University followed by the second conference at Chicago State University last year.
“This year, we seek to give our youth a greater leadership role in presenting or co-presenting workshops with adults on how to counter the increasing wave of bullying or cyberbullying,” stated Dr. Dorothy Thompson, BPA’s director.
According to federal statistics, one out of five students admits to being a bully or doing some bullying. In the near future, one out of four students will be abused by another youth. The statistics indicate that every seven minutes a child is also bullied. Additionally, 160,000 students miss school each day for fear of being bullied.
Thompson said the workshop will be open to school staff members, organization leaders and students in grades 5 and up to arm them with tools on how to minimize the negative impact of bullying. There must be one chaperone for every five pre-registered students for the seminar. She stated that her group will undertake a survey to inform selected schools about their climate and culture concerns in relationship to bullying.
In addition, youth leaders from some schools or groups will make artistic presentations about how to identify, address, intervene and safely get help in bullying situations to promote student safety.
Presenters at the seminar will include Carolyn Strong, Dean of Students at Thornton High School, Author of “Black Girls Blues; Attorney Kathleen McGowan, Outreach Coordinator and Service Specialist for child victims of Technology Facilitated Crimes at the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office; Pilar McKinney, a licensed medical social worker and expert in the art of creative communication for conflict resolution, and social emotional and behavior concerns; and Dr. Regina N. Williams of Special Education Consultants, LLC., an advocate for individuals with disabilities and their unique needs.
In attendance will be a contingent from Global Girls, a dance/performance arts group under the direction of the leader, Marvinetta Woodley Penn. The seminar is free for students and their chaperones. Cost is $5 for parents and $15 for other adults.