BGCA and Instagram Bullying Prevention

Boys & Girls Clubs of America partnered with Instagram and PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center for a design workshop with young people in Washington, D.C.

Designing A World Without Bullying

Putting a stop to bullying requires input from many perspectives. With that in mind, Boys & Girls Clubs of America partnered with Instagram and PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center for a design workshop with young people in Washington, D.C.
More than 50 local young people joined anti-bullying experts for a half day of real talk about bullying, both offline and online. Topics covered included the root causes of bullying, how young people address it amongst their peers, and how to empower young people to put an end to it.

BGCA and Instagram Bullying Prevention


At the workshop, attendees also brainstormed creative ideas for anti-bullying education materials, which were then turned into a series of posters by Brazilian community illustrator @leonatsume. The anti-bullying posters will be displayed in Boys & Girls Clubs, schools, and youth centers across the country, and can be downloaded for free below.

BGCA and Instagram Bullying Prevention

Download Posters


In the coming weeks, Instagram will also roll out a global anti-bullying sticker in Instagram Stories, inspired by these designs to support anti-bullying initiatives around the world.

 

“It was cool to watch young people create a community on the spot that produced art that helps to define how they escape the horrors of bullying,” said LeVar Jones, teen services director for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington.

As social media becomes increasingly ingrained in the lives of today’s teens, the incidence of bullying on digital platforms has risen. About 15% of high school students report that they’ve experienced cyberbullying, according to the National Center for Education Statistics and Bureau of Justice.

BGCA and Instagram Bullying Prevention


“Expression is at the heart of what we stand for at Instagram. If people don’t feel comfortable expressing themselves, or if they fear bullying, we have failed them,” said Karina Newton, director of public policy, Instagram. “That’s why we made a public commitment to lead the industry in the fight against online bullying, and we’re investing heavily to meet that commitment.”

 

Instagram is working to develop tools to help prevent online bullying, such as:

  • “Comment Warning” to encourage positive interactions. This tool notifies people when their comment may be considered offensive before it is posted
  • “Restrict” to protect people from unwanted interactions. Once you restrict someone, comments from that person on your posts will only be visible to that person. Restricted people also won’t be able to see when you’re active on Instagram or when you’ve read their direct messages.

BGCA and Instagram Bullying Prevention

Whether it occurs online or at school, the teens attending the design workshop understood the importance of tackling the issue of bullying head-on.

“It’s extremely important for us to talk about bullying, because there are kids who are taking their lives because they’re getting bullied,” said Jarrod J., a youth who attends the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington. “As mentor to other youth at my Club, we want to just make sure we give a voice to teens to let them know that we have their back.”


Learn more about how Boys & Girls Clubs create safe places for all youth. 

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