WILLIAMS — Madison Olson, a senior at Williams High School, received a $500 scholarship from the Coconino Coalition for Children & Youth. Our Prevention Council created our annual Child Abuse Prevention Essay contest so that Williams High School Seniors could describe what the community can do to help prevent and respond to child abuse and childhood trauma.
Her winning essay focused on bullying, the lasting impact that bullying can have on individuals throughout their lives and prevention options. The work of CCC&Y is concerned with all the ways young people are traumatized and bullying represents a key concern for many youth. Further, bullying is difficult on every young person, but the impact can be further magnified for individuals who may be having other difficulties, such as abuse at home or lack of caring connections in their life. We also know that traumas that are not balanced with protective factors can have tremendous social impacts including substance use.
“Bullying can start at a young age and it only intensifies throughout life”, Olson wrote in her essay. “Bullying is a conscious and purposeful action that targets emotional strength, confidence, and self-esteem. Childhood bullying affects victims throughout their life and influences life altering decisions as the child grows, which is why our community must prevent bullying, know the signs of a child getting bullied, and take action against bullies. …
“Children, especially teens, have trouble communicating what is actually happening at school, at social events, or even at home, so we need to acknowledge the signs. As parents, teachers, and mentors, we also need to know the signs that a child is a bully themselves. These signs include aggressive behavior, physical or verbal fights, do not accept responsibility for their actions, ect. (“Warning Signs for Bullying”) — www.stopbullying.gov/bullying/warning signs). …
“When children are bullying or being bullied, we need to be able to treat the situation with compassion rather than only punishment. Instead of being angry and upset, we should practice keeping an open mind and showing that you care because there is something the problem is stemming from,” she wrote. …
“Keep in mind, we have to keep our children safe! From past experiences, I know that children being mentally abused with bullying often seek help but are ignored due to lack of belief or knowledge of the situation.”
CCC&Y’s Coconino Prevention Council selected Madison’s essay among many amazing essays. We wish her and all the applicants much success as they move into their college careers. We also welcome the voices of youth and young adults in all that we do. Feel free to connect with us!
See the entire essay HERE
Williams-Grand Canyon News (Paid subscription) — Williams High School senior spotlight: Madi Olson