February 25, 2020

Barbados students battle bullies’ detrimental impact in poster contest


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bully-poster-copyYoungsters create artwork for co-sponsored competition

The attached poster by , 14 of the Springer Memorial Secondary School on , won first place honors in the “Stop Bullying in Our Schools” poster competition.

Primary and secondary school students in Barbados successfully stood up to bullies and discouraged abuse among their peers by participating in a nationwide poster competition.

Fourteen-year-old Lesleyann Downer of Springer Memorial Secondary School was the winner of the contest, which generated votes online. Prizes were awarded last month in the competition, which held last fall.

Sponsored by the Barbados Government Information Service and UNICEF , the recently-concluded Stop Bullying in Our Schools contest was established “to deepen children’s and adolescents’ knowledge of bullying and empower them and their peers to address the issue,” which carries serious short-term and long-term physical and mental effects.

“Children who are bullied are likely to experience depression and anxiety, increased feelings of sadness and loneliness, changes in sleep and eating patterns and loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy,” according to officials from UNICEF. “These issues may persist into adulthood. The effects can also be manifested in health complaints and decreased academic achievement. Both bullied children and those who bully are also more likely to miss, skip, or drop out of school.”


Poster by Lesleyann Downer, 14

For her first-place poster, Downer won a 10-inch Samsung Tab 3 tablet.

Prizes for runners-up included Samsung tablets, an Acer laptop, a mini laptop and a Nintendo 3DS XL game system.

The competition is over, but many of the submissions will continue to carry their creative anti-bullying messages as part of the UNICEF Eastern Caribbean Facebook page, www.facebook.com/UNICEFeasterncaribbean.

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