Did you know?…77% of students are bullied mentally, verbally and physically.

On the internet, it’s also bad, with 43% of students experiencing cyberbullying.

In all, 1 in 5 students admit to being a bully, or doing some bullying themselves.

As a result, each day 160,000 students miss school for fear of being bullied.

This is all based on data from Bureau Of Justice School Bullying and Cyberbullying Statistics Study.

Thankfully, communities are striking back against bullying.

In February, the BRIDGES staff joined the Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County and other nonprofit partners for a county-wide celebration in helping to “turn bullies into buddies.”

Participants wore pink shirts on Feb. 22 in support of bullying prevention programs.

Pink Shirt Day is an international bullying prevention event which originated in Canada when a boy was bullied for wearing a pink shirt on his first day at high school. Bystanders came to school the next day wearing pink. They created a “Sea of Pink” to make a statement to stand up for others.

In Palm Beach County, thousands of children and adults prepared for Pink Shirt Day with an annual local educational theme and event coordinated by the Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County’s Turning Bullies into Buddies program.

Participants also came to the Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County on Feb. 8th or 9th to network, meet local vendors and attend a free training. They learned how to prepare K-5 students for Pink Shirt Day with literature-based activities designed to teach an Attitude of Gratitude!

Learn more here about bullying and its impact on children, families and communities.