KidsPeace National Centers for Kids in Crisis
General Web site: www.kidspeace.org
Teen Web site: www.teencentral.net
This is an organization that helps struggling teens. If you’re a student and need somewhere to turn, KidsPeace is a trusted resource.
AFSP (American Foundation for Suicide Prevention)
General Web site: www.AFSP.org
National Suicide Prevention Hotline
The AFSP saves lives. Remember, suicide is never the answer, no matter how awful you may feel inside. If you are having any suicidal thoughts, reach out to this organization. Please. Don’t go through this alone. They are there to help.
Resources for Parents
The Blue Pages of your local phone book is probably one of the most comprehensive resources available. It lists regional and national crisis hotlines as well as self-help organizations and support groups in your local area. Believe it or not, local park districts and libraries are also wonderful outlets and can be a lifeline for lonely teens. Bullied children need friends and social lives. If school doesn’t yield this companionship, I recommend that parents seek an interim social life for their child, somewhere they can participate with their peers in an activity they enjoy. Reach out to the park district and local library the nearest next town over from where you live that doesn’t feed into your child’s school, and ask them to e-mail or fax you their list of organized activities for kids. They often will have everything from soccer and cheerleading, to dance, computer clubs, Reader’s Theater, and teen community theater, among other options that your child can participate in. It’s vital, however, that you go one town over, because if a child is being bullied at school and engages in a park district activity with those same classmates, it defeats the purpose, which is to provide the experience of a fresh start with new faces.You can achieve two objectives by enrolling your child in a park district or library activity: on the days school feels especially lonely, your child has something to look forward to; additionally, this new social outlet will likely boost his confidence, and the more confident he is, the less of a target he will be at school.
Resources for Schools
INJJA (It’s NOT Just Joking Around!™): This program is my day-long in-school anti-bullying program for students, teachers, and parents. For more information on how to bring INJJA to your school, click here.