Posted by SchoolDays Newshound on 27/02/2014. Tags: Parenting Teachers
This week, the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC) launched its annual Anti-Bullying Shield Campaign to continue to raise awareness of the issue of bullying
and to highlight the positive work that has been undertaken with schools around the country. At the launch a building wrap featuring Brian O'Driscoll was unveiled on the iconic Liberty Hall with Brian holding the ISPCC Blue Shield to represent the fact that he is standing up against bullying.
The list of those celebrities who give their support to raise awareness includes Brian O’Driscoll, Colin Farrell, David Coleman, Gary Barlow, Jamie Heaslip, Keith Barry, Laura Whitmore, Little Mix, Louis Walsh, Mark Feehily, Niall Horan, One Direction, Saoirse Ronan, The Script, Brendan O’Carroll as Mrs Brown and this year they are joined by Michael Buble, Jessie J, Rob and Dave Kearney, as well as Robbie and Claudine Keane. This celebrity endorsement is an important tool for the ISPCC in reaching out to those children who are being bullied as it reinforces that they are not alone.
Funds raised from this year’s campaign will go towards funding the ISPCC Anti-Bullying Co-ordinator and the work done with schools across the country. This year’s campaign will once again involve the ISPCC, throughout the month of March, selling the iconic Shield pin. This year the ISPCC is hugely grateful to a number of retailers who will be selling the Shield pins; Penneys, Elverys, Harvey Norman, M&S and Sam McCauley Chemists. The National Day of Action is Friday March 7th when volunteers across the country will take to the streets to sell the ISPCC Shield pins.
Ashley Balbirnie, CEO of ISPCC said today; “Last year, Childline phone and online services received over 8,000 contacts in relation to bullying, and many more again about the impact bullying can have; calls about depression, loneliness, low self-esteem and in some cases self-harm. For many young people they feel that they have nowhere else to turn.”
In 2013, as a response to the growing concern of bullying and the need to support schools in their endeavours to tackle the issue, the ISPCC launched a number of initiatives as part of the Shield Anti-Bullying campaign,
A number of new initiatives for this year’s campaign were announced this week including:
"Stand Up" - Bullying Report Tool - an innovative online based bullying reporting tool for schools. This tool will support a school’s effort in hearing the experiences of their pupils, parents and school community in all areas to do with bullying. By placing this tool on the school’s website, that school is sending a clear message this is a “telling school” and facilitates children and the school community to “Stand Up“ against bullying.
“Shield Flag” scheme for schools – developed by the ISPCC in recognition of the strong efforts being made by schools to respond to and counteract bullying behaviour. The flag is a public symbol that the school is bullying aware and has met a number of criteria in its response to bullying. All schools which achieve the Shield Flag status will receive a flag for display at their school as well as a Shield Flag certificate for use online.www.ispcc.ie/flag
To download the Shield toolkit go to www.ispcc.ie/toolkit