LETTERS OF SUPPORT DELIVERED
Thanks for checking in!
We delivered 868 letters on 11/25/17!
Sicily's 5th grade Principal, Mrs. Marks, surprised her with the Friend Mail delivery IN SCHOOL during their monthly "Good Citizens" breakfast. Her mom arranged that surprise! Watch the video of the presentation, below, and please consider writing to our new current Project Youth!
Mighty Upstander (10)
Battled School Bus Bullies Alone!
Let's show her she's FRIEND STRONG!
When school started in September, bus rides “after school got me a break and to hang out with my friends. But it changed now,” the 10-year-old said to a Tampa Bay ABC ActionNews reporter. That’s because of constant bullying on the bus by three 4th & 5th grade boys.
A straight-A student living in Florida, Sicily is a Teacher's Helper and a Mentor for children in Kindergarten and 1st Grade. She's also on the Safety Patrol! Here is a story her mom told us about Sicily's kind - and "sassy" - nature...
And now in 5th Grade,
Sicily chose to stand up for bullied children once again...
For WEEKS, the 3 boys on the bus bullied the younger kids, calling the 1st & 2nd Graders names like "fat," "idiot" and "stupid." When the children would cry, they called them "crybabies." The bullies threw things at the children.
These 1st & 2nd Graders naturally turned to Sicily for help and asked to sit next to her for safety. She demanded her peers "leave them alone." She repeatedly told the Bus Driver who shrugged it away, saying, "what do you want me to do about it." Her school had a Zero Tolerance Policy against bullying but that depended on adults reporting the behavior. The Bus Driver would not report the bullying, so Sicily was on her own with only her family supporting her.
Soon enough, the bullies turned on Sicily. They yelled in her face. Sicily stood her ground saying "do not yell in my face," but they continued. They made physical threats, obscene gestures and called her names that we can not repeat here because they were so awful and hurtful.
Sicily begged the Bus Driver for help, but he wouldn't do anything. One day, he even forced her to sit next to her bullies, and the next day he made her sit in the back of the bus all alone, shaming her. He never reported the boys.
WHAT CAN YOU DO WHEN YOU "GO FIND HELP" FROM AN ADULT, BUT YOU DON'T GET ANY? GO FIND A MORE TRUSTWORTHY ADULT!
Sicily and her mother went to local ABC NEWS (see link to ABC NEWS story below) and to the administration of the school. The administration was at a loss because they had no reports of bullying from the bus driver, so the boys could not be disciplined. However, after a conference with his supervisor, the Bus Driver was removed from the route, and a new Driver PLUS a Bus Assistant were put in place, bringing with them new rules and order. The new Driver and Assistant are strict and stop the bullies, THANKS TO SICILY not looking the other way.
Throughout the whole ordeal, Sicily never stopped riding the bus. She showed up to stand up for the 1st & 2nd Graders. “Even if I don’t know them, I still want to stand up for them cause I feel like they can’t stand up for themselves,” Sicily said.
SICILY IS BOTH AN UPSTANDER AND A VICTIM OF BULLIES.
LET'S SHOW HER THE KINDNESS AND SUPPORT
SHE SHOWS TO OTHERS, BECAUSE... EVEN HEROES GET TIRED!! Please write Sicily a letter of support and thanks!
As a 4th Grader, Sicily overheard adults talking about a 1st Grade girl who was being bullied for her beautiful African-American hair and because she "looked different." The 1st Grader had told her mom that she "just wants to kill herself." When Sicily heard that, she jumped into action! She asked for the little girl's information and rallied her 4th Grade friends. Sicily and her friends started walking this little girl to and from class so the bullies could not bother her. They ate lunch with her in the cafeteria, a thrill for the 1st Grader to be seated with the "cool" 4th Grade girls. After many weeks of this, the little girl's mother reported that her suicidal comments stopped and the bullies left her alone because she was in the company of "big kids." WAY TO GO, SICILY!
Sicily with her "Friend Mail" Delivery and her Principal, Mrs. Marks!
Mail Letters for Sicily to...
See The Wish/
246 Main Street
Cold Spring, NY 10516
BY NOVEMBER 21st!
Or, you can skip the postage and email your letter or drawing (embedded in the email or a clear picture or scanned letter) to firstname.lastname@example.org
We'll print it out and include it in her "Friend Mail" package!
The Be-A-Friend Project does not give advice, therapy or intervention.
Our one purpose is to send letters and cards of encouragement and caring from kids to kids.
449 LANE GATE ROAD, COLD SPRING, NY 10516
Co-President Jennifer Cell: 845-742-7112
The organization’s formal legal name is BE A FRIEND PROJECT, INC.
It is a not-for-profit 501c3 organization / Federal Tax ID # 84-2802576.
Any donation to the Be A Friend Project, Inc. is tax-deductible to the maximum extent allowed by law, thank you!