With bullying a continuing national concern, Google is joining the fourth annual Playworks‘ campaign, “Real Players Don’t Bully,” with its Be Internet Awesome program to call attention to the need to empower the next generation to be kind on and offline, leading this charge from elementary school playgrounds.
More than 3.2 million students report feeling left out or bullied at school each year. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than seven percent of all students admit to skipping school due to fear for personal safety from physical and verbal bullying. Further, teachers report that cyberbullying is their #1 safety concern in their classrooms according to a recent Google survey.
Playworks, a national nonprofit, partners with elementary schools, school districts, and afterschool programs across the country, providing the tools and resources needed to ensure that every kid, regardless of race, socioeconomic background, or athletic ability, experiences safe and healthy play every day. This school year, the nonprofit is serving 1.25 million kids at 2,500 schools across the country.
The campaign will feature a series of events with elementary school students around the country in promotion of the Real Players Don’t Bully campaign. At each event, kids will also learn how It’s Cool To Be Kind both online and in real life through Google’s Be Internet Awesome kind lessons and Interland game through Kind Kingdom. Stories promoting kindness are being shared across social media. The series of events will culminate in Washington, D.C. on October 30 at an event engaging members of Congress about creating systemic change.
“Our goal through this campaign is to provide kids with the training and information they need to treat others with empathy and respect,” says Elizabeth Cushing, President of Playworks. “Together, we can stop bullying before it starts. We’re starting real conversations with kids, so that they can role model positive behavior in person and online. We’re proud to partner with Google’s Be Internet Awesome to bring this campaign to kids nationwide.”
Playworks works hard all year to prevent bullying. In Playworks schools last school year, 85% of staff report fewer incidents of bullying with Playworks. Playworks provides free resources to help schools make their schools more inclusive:
- Proactive Bullying Prevention Techniques
- Re-thinking Bullying Behavior
- One game to make everyone feel included
- Why no one is “just a bully”
- Ways to Stop Bullying Before It Starts
Over the past three years, initial stages of the Real Players Don’t Bully Campaign garnered more than 195 million social media impressions and offline activation activities. In previous years, actors, models, singers, dancers, politicians, and other celebrities and social media stars have supported the campaign at events and via social media to promote kindness in person and online. Follow Real Players Don’t Bully on social media using #RealPlayersDontBully. The nonprofit has set a goal that 3.5 million kids in 7,000 elementary schools nationwide experience safe and healthy play every day. For more information, visit: www.playworks.org.