back to school
Click here to watch a video with more details on the No More Bullies campaign.
Radio show host
message to schools
CONTRARY TO WHAT some
people think, bullying isn’t
a normal part of childhood—
something that kids eventually outgrow. It’s unacceptable
behaviour that can be
changed if everyone works
together to put a stop to it.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF JAMIE JOHNSON
Stuart Schwartz appears at an Ottawa-area school to bring his anti-bullying
campaign to young students. Below, a No More Bullies bracelet.
By Marjo Johne
Schwartz, his co-hosts and partners from Red Cross
and Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario take
their anti-bullying message directly to students in
the Ottawa region, as well as on Facebook, Twitter
and the MAJIC Morning Show.
STUART SCHWARTZ’S CAMPAIGN against bullying began with a newspaper story that brought
back memories of being relentlessly teased, pushed
around and shoved into lockers by his classmates.
● It’s important to tell
someone. Children are often
afraid to be seen as tattletales. Let your kids know
that, whether it’s them or
another child being bullied,
they need to tell a parent or
an adult at the school.
About two years ago, Schwartz—an Ottawa
radio show host known to his fans as Stuntman
Stu—saw an article in the local paper about grade 12
boys throwing eggs at
a younger student as
he was walking home
with his bicycle. The
older boys were in a
car, which hit and
damaged the bicycle.
In 45-minute presentations to students, No
More Bullies speakers talk about their personal
experiences with bullying, the consequences of
cruel behaviour against other kids and what everyone can do to put a stop to bullying.
● It’s not OK to just
watch. Kids need to understand the role bystanders
play in bullying, says
Schwartz. Encourage your
children to help victims of
bullying or, if that’s not safe,
to tell an adult right away.
“That story hit
close to me because I
was bullied in high
school,” recalls Schwartz, co-host of the MAJIC
No More Bullies initially targeted high school
students, says Schwartz, but is now presented to
first-grade students as well. All students get a No
More Bullies bracelet at the end of the presentation.
“The response has been amazing,” says
Schwartz. “The grade 1 kids always amaze me with
the innocence and honesty of their comments and
questions. With high school students, we find that
some will stick around after to ask questions, which
allows us to provide guidance to kids who have been
affected directly by bullying.”
Morning Show, which airs on 100.3 FM from
Canada’s capital city. “I talked about it on the air, and
after the show I continued the conversation on
● Watch for the signs.
Know and be alert to signs
that your child may be a target. These include lack of
interest in daily activities,
loss of appetite, moodiness
and aggressive behaviour
toward siblings or friends.
Facebook and Twitter.”
When Schwartz arrived home that day, he
tweeted “#NoMoreBullies” and then hit the sack for
“When I woke up, I thought, ‘That’s it—we’re
going to start a campaign and it’s going to be called
No More Bullies,’ ” says Schwartz, a Costco member.
Today, No More Bullies ( www.nomorebullies.ca)
is a full-fledged awareness campaign that sees
The public has also responded enthusiastically
to the No More Bullies campaign, says Schwartz. A
number of businesses have even made financial
donations, which No More Bullies has passed on to
Youth Net, a youth mental health promotion pro-
gram at Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario.
No More Bullies’ message has reached at least
one of Schwartz’s tormentors in high school. The former schoolmate contacted Schwartz and apologized.
“He said, ‘I’m sorry; I didn’t know I was doing
this to you,’ ” says Schwartz. “The 13-year-old in me
wanted to tell him where to go, but I also knew it was
important for me to finally get past that anger.” C
● Know where to get
help. Websites such as
www.bullybeware.com provide tips and resources for
parents, students and educators. It’s also a good idea to
let your kids know about Kids
Help Phone ( www.kidshelp
phone.ca), which provides
phone and community support to kids in crisis.—MJ
Marjo Johne is a Toronto-based journalist.