Children empowered to eradicate bullying
Children from across the city have been learning to become anti-bullying ambassadors at their schools.
The Anti-bullying Training Guide was delivered by the Diana Award at an event hosted by Mayville High School in Southsea.
Training officer Lauren Hart said: '˜The idea of today is for children to become anti-bullying ambassadors and to go back to their own schools and make a real difference by putting into practice what they have learnt.'
The concept of empowering students was a big attraction to the other five schools taking part.
Andrew Milford, deputy head of Sixth Form at Portsmouth Grammar School, said: '˜We have brought seven Year 13 students who are going to being using their training to support younger children in their role as peer mentors. The Year 8 students are going to become anti-bullying representatives for their tutor groups.'
Students looked at video case studiesÂ and took part in a range of interactive sessions focusedÂ on the role of anti-bullying ambassadors. Many of the students involved said they now felt confident about putting their new-found skill set toÂ use.
Year 12 student at Portsmouth High School, Marcy Lea, said: '˜I have seen my friends go through bullying and seen the affects. We are an all girls school and so I want to really focus on combating the conflicts which are linked to girls such as dealing with friendship issues.'
Julia Cowlard, Year 10 student at Mayville, added: '˜We have already decided we are going to set up a lunchtime drop-in session for anyone who is experiencingÂ problems.'
A key focus of the session looked at the rise in prominence of cyber bullying. This is something whichÂ George Carrick-Baker, 11, has personally experienced.
'˜I am on my Xbox quite a lot and cyber bullying is something which I have experienced. Hopefully events like today will help to stop people doing it. I want my school to be a place where people can express themselves without upsetting others,' explained George.
Supporting the event was Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan.Â
'˜It is greatÂ to meet all of the young people here todayÂ andÂ I am really interested to hear theirÂ viewsÂ on bullying. As someone who was brought up in Portsmouth I want to help eradicate bullying from allÂ Â our schools,' said Mr Morgan.