Pupils from Cnoc Mhuire Senior School, Killinarden, Tallaght, along with anti-bullying campaigner David Coleman, at the launch of today's campaign. Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

ISPCC launches campaign to shield children from bullying

Blue shield pins are to be sold throughout March to help raise awareness of child bullying.

TODAY MARKED THE launch of the second ever ISPCC Shield campaign, which is aimed at raising awareness of the issue of bullying.

Celebrities joining the campaign this year include Gary Barlow, Emeli Sandé and Little Mix.

Announcing the launch, the CEO of the ISPCC, Ashley Balbirnie, said that in 2012, Childline received over 2,000 calls each day, many of which related to bullying. “Some young people even blamed themselves for what is happening to them,” she said. “And others were desperately looking for ways to escape the torment.”

Child psychologist David Coleman, who joined the campaign this year, said that “bullying has rarely been out of the spotlight” in the 12 months since last year’s inaugural launch, adding:

We all need to tackle this issue – in the home, in the school, in everyday life to try and stamp it out. The effects of bullying can last a lifetime.

Blue shield pins are to be sold at a number of outlets throughout March in support of the campaign, with a ‘National Day of Action’ on Friday 8 March.

(Infographic courtesy of ISPCC)

New initiatives

A number of new initiatives are also being launched as part of this year’s campaign, including:

  • Shield My School Programme: A self-evaluation tool to combat bullying can be downloaded here.
  • Dedicated bullying support service: A live one-to-one text messaging support service can be accessed by texting ‘Bully’ to 50101.

Read: 63 per cent of people think schools should ban smartphones and social networks >

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