Anti-bullying march on Saturday

POSTED: 10/19/12 11:45 AM

St. Maarten – The End of Bullying Begins with Me: that’s the message during the Voice of the Children (VOOC) foundation’s Bullying Prevention Awareness Month in October. This month is observed as anti-bulling month in the United States and several parts of the Caribbean. Over the last two years, VOOC has taken to the streets of St. Maarten to march for children’s rights in particular.
“These walkathon formatted events unite the community and raise nationwide awareness against social ills such as bullying, youth violence and illiteracy,” the foundation said.

On Saturday it has organized a Walk Against Bullying and Youth Violence. The walk will start from the Prins Bernard Bridge at 6:00 p.m., head up Walter J. Nisbeth Road and end at the Clem Labega Square in front of the Government Administration Building where government officials will speak.

VOOC created the anti bullying campaign in 2011 with a one-week event which has now evolved into a year-long effort that encourages everyone to take an active role in the bullying prevention movement.

“The culture of bullying won’t end until people across the country take action and show kids that they care,” said Julie Hertzog, Director of Parent Advocacy Coalition for Educational Rights (PACER) National Bullying Prevention Center in the United States.

“National Bullying Prevention Month is a great opportunity to do that. This is a very real and painful issue that kids are facing but they don’t have to face it alone. Bullying can be prevented if we all work together to change the culture,” chairlady of VOOC, Sharmaine Olivacce added.

Bullying can be verbal, physical, or via the Internet. It can severely affect the victim’s self-image, social interactions, and school performance-often leading to insecurity, lack of self-esteem, and depression in adulthood. School dropout rates and absences among victims of bullying are much higher than among other students. Studies have shown that children who have been identified as a bully by age eight are six times more likely to have a criminal conviction by age 24. Children who are bullies may continue to be bullies as adults, and are more prone to becoming child and spouse abusers, the foundation explained.

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Comments (1)


  1. Clair V says:

    Good people of St Maarten; Do not allow the brutal murders of Mike and Thelma King to be forgotten. Mike and Thelma were good people who brought other good people to your island and they have come to love St Maarten, but now we watch and wait before deciding whether it is a safe place for good people. I have no doubt it was right to arrest those in jail now, but the harder question is whether the evil man who paid them will be allowed to get away with this horrible murder. Maybe someone thinks the good people of St Maarten will forget about it. Will you forget, good people?