Family 411: Cheerleaders Fight Bullying
Middle and high school cheerleaders are making crowds stand up and cheer for their stand against bullying. Nobody knows the effects of bullying better than girls at that age, so when it was time for their teams to come up with an entry for competition, they found different words to send bullying victims a message. "If you're being bullied, you need some encouraging words like 'you are unique, you are beautiful,'" said cheerleader Savannah Roads. "Don't let bullying hurt you, and rumors are toxic." Words from hit songs like Pink's "Perfect," and "Just the Way You Are" by Bruno Mars can help. Parents and teachers may feel like their kids never listen, but they do listen to their friends, and that's just what those cheerleaders are hoping. "Most kids our age don't want to stand up, don't want to stand out, but we definitely did," said cheerleader Loryn Gavula. "And we wanted to make a difference." Gavula is cheer captain, and she's a senior. She has dreams of becoming a teaching career, and trying to put an end to bullying. And by the looks of it, the girls' competition entry said something to the first crowd who saw it. "When they were done it was silent," said cheerleading coach Chelsey Hassebrook. "And then after the silence, it was just roaring." "The applause we got and the standing ovation, it brought me to tears as we were walking off the mat," said Gavula. The girls won the competition, but by then, it was no longer about winning.