Educators, Youth Advocates Tackle Bullying

Reaching across cultural and language barriers, immigrant students at the San Francisco International High School have compiled profiles of individuals working to solve a problem the students are personally affected by or interested in. This group of change-makers is helping to reduce bullying.

Holly Pederson

Holly

Biography

Holly Pederson is from Davis, California. She works at Jewish Family and Children Services (JFCS). Holly has worked there for about four years. This organization provides training about school bullying so teachers, parents and kids can know what bullying is and how to prevent it.

More About Our Change-maker

“I feel like it’s important work, so I feel good that I’m helping. I also feel a lot of sadness that bullying is happening. I feel concerned that it will continue to happen, but I feel good that I’m doing this work…[it’s] sad that kids have to have the experience of bullying, so when I talk about bullying, I think about the kids I’ve known who have been bullied and it makes me sad that they had to go through that.”

What You Can Do To Help
If you want to stop or prevent bullying, or if you see bullying you can tell the teacher or talk to the teacher about what you saw.

Student Group:
Carlos Diaz,14, is from El Salvador. Tania Santos, 16, is from Mexico. Katherine, 17, is from Honduras.

Vlada Teper

Vlada

Biography

Our group interviewed Vlada Teper. Vlada works at San Francisco International High School. She also runs an organization to help schools to build peace. She has been working to support peace clubs and working to stop bullying for nine years. She also teaches 11th grade at SFIHS.

More About Our Change-Maker

Vlada Teper had a very interesting and sad experience with bullying. She told us, “The most difficult part of my life was to have to leave Moldova because there was discrimination against Jews—and my family is Jewish. I was not allowed to be in contact with my friends from there for 10 years. That felt very painful and unfair—that my family had to leave a home where my family lived for many generations. This experience inspires me to work to end discrimination and unfair treatment of others.”

What You Can Do To Help
If you want to help change the problem of bullying, you can look at the person bullying in the eyes and tell him to stop. You can also talk with your teacher or parents and tell the people you have to stop the bullying.

Student Group
Axel, 14, is from Mexico. Guillermo, 16, is from Mexico. Ronaldo , 17, is from El Salvador. Ricardo, 17, is from Mexico. Javier, 17, is from El Salvador.

 

Karina Gonzalez Ugur

Karina

Biography

Our group interwed Karina Gonzalez Ugur. She comes from Instituto Familiar de la Raza. She has been working there for almost four years. Her job is to help youth. She works with youth who have problems, probation or even who were suspended from school, and she helps them to get better. Another interesting fact is that she works with students who have problems mentally and physically and she helps them to get better. She enjoys helping others so that we can improve our community.

More About Our Change-maker

“Bullying is something dear to my heart; I think all youth should be treated equally. It is not okay that other kids need to feel afraid, and definitely it is not okay to put down or harass other students.”

“A youth becomes a bully when in their environment they are being bullied; it can be by their parents or even a sibling. Maybe they think that they are not being accepted, maybe friends show them that they are not worth it.” I really liked when she said this because I know a lot of people who go through this, too. I think Karina is a person to follow because she is doing a great thing; she helps a lot of youth who have been bullied physically and verbally.

What You Can Do To Help

If you want to help change the problem of bullying, don’t wait too long. You can stop bullying by talking with adults. You can also help and identify children who are bullied. You can help kids understand what bullying is, keep a good relationship with your children, encourage kids, and show them how they can treat others with kindness, respect and courtesy. Remember that everybody who is around you is part of your community.

Student Group

Jasson Enriquez, 15, is from Guatemala. Armando, 17, is from Guatemala. Jonathan, 16, is from Salvador. Diego, 15, is from Peru.

 

Georgina Gutierrez

Biography

My group interviewed Georgina Gutierrez. She is from San Francisco. She is working in Instituto Familiar De La Raza. She works on different topics, including bullying, for six years with those from 12-24 years old. She gives them case management services where she meets individually one time a week to try to set goals to try to help them get any service that they need.

More about Our Change-Maker

Georgina Gutierrez told us a powerful story that shows how she has helped people who are bullied. Georgina was working with a young girl who was bullied because other students were telling Georgina’s client a lot of ugly nasty things. The young lady decided to talk with Georgina. Georgina listened to the girl and Georgina asked her if it was okay to share this information with her family and school staff, and the girl says yes. Then Georgina and her client had a meeting that was anonymous. Georgina was able to speak for the young lady who was bullied with school staff. They all decided that the students who were bullying would stop and if they did not stop, they would have to meet with parents and maybe be suspended. Finally Georgina introduced her client in a group where she was supported. Now she will trust in other people and herself. This story is important because this shows how the people who are bullied have fear to speak for themselves and sometimes don’t talk with someone about what is happening. This story was different because people like Georgina helped her talk about it and find a solution.

What You Can To Do To Help

If you are a teacher or you work with young people and you want to help to change the problem of bullying, you can make a support group for the youth who are being bullied and try to make a space for them to talk about the situation and what’s going on. Another thing you can do to help is help support the mission of ending bullying in school and you can donate to No Bully at this website. If you need help you can call this number (1-866-488-7386).

Student Group:
Avelyn Atienza 16, is from the Philippines. Alex Sorto, 17, is from Honduras. Guadalupe Del Carmen, 16, is from El Salvador. Angel Rodriguez, 16, is from Mexico. Jefferson Tejada, 16, is from El Salvador.

Tobias Rugger

Tobias

Biography

Our group interviewed Toby Rugger. He is from New York, United States. He is a teacher for San Francisco International High School. He has taught for 11 years in New York, SF and Oakland. He teaches 9th and 10th grade for immigrant students who come to this country and he helps them with problems. When he sees students bullying each other with bad words or one bad word in Spanish or Chinese, he stops the problems. He thinks this is very important.

More About Our Change-Maker

Toby told us an interesting story that shows how he tries to helps stop bullying in schools. “If two students are bullying each other, then one or both students is not learning, so it is important to stop bullying in order to make people feel safe so they can learn.”
After Toby told us this, I stopped to think and ask myself, “Why do people bully? And what is fun about bullying?”

What You Can Do To Help

Treat everyone with respect.

Student Group
Nycolas, 15, is from Brazil. Abbie, 17, is from China. Erick, 18, is from Mexico. Elias, 16, is from El Salvador.

 

Denise Martell

Denise Martell

Biography

Our group interviewed Denise Martell. She is from Los Angeles, California. She studied to be a school worker at San Jose State University. She works at San Francisco International High School. She has worked on this topic for about six to seven years. She is a school social worker in the Wellness Center, SFIHS. She helps students by solving their problems. Students often times come to get help from her on problems about bullying.

More About Our Change-Maker

Denise told us an interesting example that shows how she helps students at school who are being bullied. She wants people to know that bullying is very common at school so it’s very important to talk about what’s going on when someone is being bullied. She said that young people can make change by “speaking out to someone who they trust.” She helps the students by talking to the bully and the students who are being bullied to solve their problems and she makes both students feel better.

What You Can Do To Help

If you want to help change the problem of bullying, you should accept different cultures and different people.If you want more information, you can go to www.nobully.com or call 415-767-0070.

Student Group:

Princess Joanne Real, 14, is from the Philippines.  Ruth Gaby Barrera, 17, is from Guatemala. Alan Li, 16, is from China. Anderson De Jesus, 14, is from El Salvador.

One Comment

  1. L

    This is great. Thanks for the article and important topic.

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