According to a study, when compared with data from 49 other countries the data from South Africa regarding bullying was amongst the worst.
Bullying is usually defined as repeated behaviour that is intended to hurt someone either emotionally or physically, and is often aimed at a person because of their race, religion, gender or any other aspect such as appearance or disability.
According to a study, when compared with data from 49 other countries the data from South Africa regarding bullying was amongst the worst. Of those who took part in the study, 47% of boys and 40% of girls reported being bullied on a weekly basis.*
Bullying takes a number of forms including social bullying. Social bullying involves intentionally excluding someone, spreading rumours, encouraging someone to exclude someone else, or public shaming.** This is obviously much easier to do with the use of social media than in person.
“When someone is cruel or acts like a bully, you don’t stoop to their level. No, our motto is, when they go low, we go high.”
– Michelle Obama, former First Lady of the United States of America
Why do people bully?***
- Stress and trauma in their own lives.
- Boys have sometimes been taught to be aggressive in order to cope with issues.
- Low self-esteem.
- The bully has been bullied themselves.
- Difficult home life.
- Less access to education.
- Challenging or unsupportive relationships with those who are meant to be closest to them.
How you can take a stand and make a difference:****
- Help to develop an anti-bullying policy in your school.
- Create a culture of acceptance and open communication between yourself and your friends.
- Don’t get involved in harassment, teasing or spreading gossip about others off or online
- Don’t forward or respond to offensive or upsetting messages or photos.
- Support the person who is being bullied by helping them to get assistance. For example, you could go with them to a place where they could get help or provide them with information about where to go for help.
- Tell a trusted adult who might be able to help.
- Get involved in anti-bullying campaigns.