By: Catrina Leone
The issue of bullying has gotten more attention throughout the past few years right here in Cleveland, with non-profit organizations like Rachel’s Challenge and events like the Tolerance Fair, to shed light on bullying and what can be done to help stop it. 1 in 5 children are being bullied every single day. I’m sure we have all seen it happen, or even have been the victim ourselves. The “bully free is the way to be” event was held with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, City Council, Cuyahoga County and The Famicos Foundation. It was held at Frlin D. Roosevelt school. Two special guests were in attendance, Councilman Kevin Conwell and his band, as well as Princess Ka’Nijah, a student and up-and-coming singer from Cleveland.
Councilman Kevin Conwell spoke to the children about his experiences and the work he feels needs to be done, in an effort to end violence and discrimination all together. Councilman Conwell and his band took down the house with their performance, inviting the crowd to get off their seats and join in. This was not just an event full of passion and determination, it also showcased some singing, dancing, and fun. The children were asked to come up and perform with Princess Ka’Nijah, as well as students dancing along to Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”.
The main goal and message between each performer was the same: bullying is not the answer, it is not cool to bully someone. Through events like this one, and campaigns like Rachel’s Challenge, there is a way out, and we as a community will find it. This hit home for me personally, because I have dealt with bullying myself. Just know you are never alone, there are people out there who are willing to help; teachers, parents, counselors, never be ashamed to ask for help.
The “bully free is the way to be” event was a great way to bring children together with the goal of ending discrimination, violence and bullying for good. Coming together as a community is the only way to fight back. Stay tuned to TV20 for more of what is happening in our area!