Kayla’s story is Courtesy of OC Health:
Over the past 8 years, Tracy Rick, Administrative Manager II for Behavioral Health Services (BHS) Adult and Older Adult Behavioral Health, did all she could to help her daughter Kayla who was bullied at school. “Kayla was bullied significantly in elementary and junior high school. There was another bullying incident that we were addressing with the school when #OCCOVID19 hit. For her the lock down came at a perfect time and she got to finish out her 8th grade year at home.”
Away from the bullies, Kayla came up with the idea for a stop bullying video. The idea made its way up the OC Health Care Agency. “The objective of this video is to generate a Stop Bullying movement on social media with our school aged kids,” said Dr. Jeffrey Nagel, Deputy Agency Director, BHS. “The video is part of the #StopBullyingOC campaign which focuses on helping middle and high school-aged students understand the detrimental effects of bullying and the importance of speaking up.”
Bullying affects the lives of so many students in our community:
• One out of every five (20.2%) students report being bullied.
• 41% of students who report being bullied at school think that the bullying will happen again.
• Students who experience bullying are at increased risk for depression, anxiety, sleep difficulties, lower academic achievement and dropping out of school.
Kayla used her experiences, her voice, her image and her friends in the project. “I started high school this year and wanted to start a new chapter in my life,” said Kayla. “Working on this video gave me a chance to share my experiences, to heal and to grow as a person. My hope is when someone who is bullied sees the video, they will know they are not alone and they will be inspired to speak up.”
“The inspiration for the video was to be able share what she had gone through most of her childhood,” said Tracy. “It has been wonderful to watch her grow and be able to share with the team her experiences, how they made her feel and how those experiences made her want to be able to help others. I’m thankful to everyone who took part in this because it really assisted with her healing and growth as a person.”
Kayla is grateful for the opportunity and loves how it turned out. “We created a hashtag students can use to post their stories and encouragement.”
Stop Bullying OC reminds students that they are not alone and that they have the power to stand up and speak out. It encourages students who are experiencing bullying to talk to a trusted adult and seek guidance on what to do next. To help further amplify this message, you’re encouraged to share this video https://bit.ly/3tw2rgO, utilize the #StopBullyingOC hashtag and tell your story to help others feel strong enough to speak up.
If your child needs help with bullying, please visit these sites for helpful tips and helplines: