Have you been bullied?

A new televison series is to highlight bullying among young people, and is seeking those who have experience of bullying in an attempt to help them share and relinquish their anxieties. The three part series is due to be broadcast in March 2012 and renowned clinical psychologist David Coleman wants to offer his expertise and therapeutic support to a number of young people who have been affected by bullying, either as a victim or as a bully.

As well as offering counselling, Coleman will use practical steps in an attempt to help these teens and pre-teens gain perspective on their bullying experiences and show them ways to build their self-esteem. His ultimate aim is to help them try to move beyond this negative period in their lives.

But there is more to this series than Coleman’s therapeutic support for these teens. He wants to explore the various forms of bullying that exist today, to help the audience understand the causes of bullying, and offer practical steps that adults and teens can use to identify bullying, address the issue, and help teens to cope with it. Coleman will also look beyond Ireland to get first hand experience of innovative ideas, being used abroad, which might work here.

This timely and compelling television series will shine a light on this highly sensitive subject and give a voice to those affected by bullying. The Nationwide Study of Bullying in Irish first and second level schools conducted by Dr Mona O'Moore in Trinity College Dublin indicates that some 31 per cent of primary students and 16 per cent of secondary students have been bullied at some time.

In a report compiled last April by UNICEF Ireland called Changing the Future: Experiencing Youth in Contemporary Ireland a frightening 55 per cent of teenagers surveyed admitted to having been bullied. Though cyberbullying was quite common (20 per cent ), traditional forms of bullying were most prevalent. Of those who were bullied 96 per cent were bullied with words, and 43 per cent were bullied with actions. Some 24 per cent of those who were physically bullied were beaten up, 33 per cent were attacked, 55 per cent had things thrown at them, and 59 per cent had things stolen.

To register your interest in taking part or to find out more information, call or text 087-4164998, email [email protected]

or go to www.rte.ie/tv/takepart


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