2014 Over My Shoulder
Bullying wears many disguises and it can cause a life time of ache. Bullies can be found just about anywhere—on the playground, at the dinner table, or even in the office. The harm can be physical or psychological. Today we feature Elayna Hasty, a rising humanitarian star. When we first met Elayna, she was only eleven years old, but she was already mentoring us on how to be confident-genuine-compassionate-supportive. Elayna is the perfect example of a young woman living her life well. Girls against Bullying (G.A.B.) is her “anti-bullying” support page. Take a look at all she has done since we featured her last, all while managing a full-time schedule at school!
My name is Elayna Hasty and last year Over My Shoulder helped me by supporting me with my G.A.B. Girls. Girls Against Bullying was started three years ago, and G.A.B. Girls are girls that stand together against bullying. They know that they are uniquely beautiful, inside and out. I started G.A.B. for several reasons. Going into a new school, I was being bullied by kids, but I was also being bullied by and an adult. One of my best friends was also so having issues at her school—and those girls were so mean that she is now being home-schooled, and I hardly ever see her. I went to my mom for help and advice. She knew I was hurting and did what she could do to help. She told me to take the negatives and turn them into positives because, she said, every experience can be made into a positive learning experience. It wasn’t easy, but she was right. I decided that I wanted to help others avoid being bullied and to support my friends, because that’s what friends do. Mom and I came up with a facebook page and a website. I did a lot a lot of research on how I could help others by giving them support and advice, as well as sharing statics about bullying. I have also been writing to moms and their daughters who reach out to me for advice, and have been giving workshops whenever possible. My mom bought bracelets and t-shirts to help support G.A.B, and workshops help with costs for these projects. Because of G.A.B. I have helped others and grown a lot in the process. I still believe “Bullying is a real problem but it has very real solutions. Sometimes girls feel down and not always confident in themselves. I want girls to know they are uniquely beautiful both on the inside and out.” I am now trying to help others have enough self-confidence not to be another bystander. Last year, I was blessed to be part of Kids Are Heroes last year. My hometown paper also did an article and I was able to talk about G.A.B on a Christian radio station, on Super Girls Radio, on the Inspire Me Today site, and in BYOU Magazine. I am now also a mentor in school for kindergartners and help coach the youth team for competitive cheer. I am on a level three competitive cheer team and I feel good knowing that I can help younger girls not only with their cheering, leadership, and team-building skills. My work on G.A.B. has made me want to be a Pediatric Psychologist, so that as an adult I will be able to help girls stand against bullying and be a support system to those who need it. I had a great support system, but not everyone does. Thanks to OMSF for supporting me. I am very grateful I have had people to pull me up when I was down!
2014 Village Reporter
Elayna Hasty, Founder Of “Girls Against Bullying Girls,” Holds Montpelier Library Seminar
Elayna Hasty (12 years old) of Montpelier, founder of the organization "Girls Against Bullying Girls" conducted a seminar for girls aged 5-8 this afternoon at the Montpelier Public Library. Elayna is a dynamic speaker and her story is a fascinating study of one person making a difference in the world! To read about Elayna and her organization in our upcoming edition, visitwww.thevillagereporter.com
2014 KPC News
YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day Friday includes anti-bullying message
Posted: Tuesday, June 17, 2014 11:00 pm | Updated: 10:37 am, Mon Jun 23, 2014.
By Amy Oberlin
firstname.lastname@example.org | 0 comments
ANGOLA — The annual Healthy Kids Day at the YMCA of Steuben County, 500 E. Harcourt Road, is Friday, 4-7 p.m.
Healthy Kids Day is celebrated at nearly 1,600 YMCAs across the country, with a goal to get children active and learning.
“One in three U.S. children is obese. This statistic, coupled with the fact that once summer hits, children will be more idle, demonstrates why it’s important to help families develop healthy habits now,” said Brandon Riepenhoff, Healthy Living Coordinator at the YMCA of Steuben County. “As part of the Y’s commitment to healthy living, through YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day, our goal is to improve the health and well-being of kids and inspire habits they can continue into adulthood.”
On Friday, children and their parents can try out Drums Alive! and fitness classes. Other features include the Parkview hospital helicopter, fingerprinting and identification, a K-9 unit, electrical safety by REMC, Ridenour Acres and other community displays.
Girls Against Bullying Girls — GAB — headed by Elayna Hasty, 12, of Montpelier, Ohio, will be there.
“Girls that stand together against bullying are leaders, and know that they are uniquely beautiful from the inside out,” says Hasty, the reigning Junior Miss Williams County.
“She had had some issues with bullying but they were not as bad as what her one girlfriend was having,” said her mother, Laura Hasty-Leese. Hasty created GAB to support girls who were suffering from personal and online attacks, and recently started offering workshops.
“If anyone’s interested in having her come in and speak, she is more than willing to do it,” said Hasty-Leese. “She really loves working with kids.”
The mission of the organization is to promote leadership, self-esteem, community involvement and communication skills for girls and boys.
“We need to encourage others to take complaints of bullying seriously and take the appropriate steps to intervene. Bystanders have the opportunity to help eliminate bullying,” says the mission statement.
There is a web page at gabgirls.wix.com/gabgirls and a Facebook page at Girls Against Bullying Girls.
And, Hasty will be at Healthy Kids Day to spread her message.
“She’s going to be there with her stand, her T-shirts and her bracelets,” said Hasty-Leese.
Healthy Kids Day includes giveaways, prizes and the chance to win a bike. The first 60 children through the door get a free YMCA T-shirt.
2014 Pay It Forward
2014 Generosity Philosophy
2014 Sweety High Blog
Elayna recently spoke with us about her own experiences with bullying and why advocating against bullying and support self-esteem are so important to her!
A combination of experiences inspired Elayna to create G.A.B. Girls.
Elayna faced her own bullying experiences at school starting in the 1st grade up until she was in the 5th grade.
"I was tormented by an adult when I was young, telling me I was fat, stupid and worthless," Elayna explained. "She always made fun of my clothes."
Elayna changed schools, but bullying persisted.
"The school bully that was mean to other girls would mock me," she said.
The same bully targeted Elayna's friend.
"The main reason anti-bullying is so close to my heart is because my friend was being bullied not just at school, but online to the point where she left school to be homeschooled," Elayna said.
Elayna's friend was bullied around the age of 12, and preteens are the most likely to get bullied, Elayna said.
"It really hurt and bothered me," she said. "I am just thankful that she is ok. I know how it feels to be treated like that and not to have someone to protect you, especially if it is someone that should."
Elayna was just 10 at the time, but she had had enough.
"I knew I needed help to not only help my friend and myself but other children," she said. "After that week of name calling and comments I finally went to my parents."
Speaking with her parents was a big help for Elayna.
"My parents have always supported and encouraged me to stand up for what was right, even if that meant I would stand alone at times," she said. "I was really frustrated and hurt for my girlfriend that was hurting. It wasn't fair. Girls were just jealous of her."
After speaking with her mother, Elayna decided that she needed to somehow be a part of putting an end to this bullying.
"She said we would never stop people being purposely mean, but there was the ability to support, encourage, and help to make a difference," she said.
The two got out a pen and paper and brainstormed ideas. Eventually, they came up with the idea for a Facebook page for the cause.
"She thought of a support page that we named G.A.B. Girls, because girls like to gab," Elayna explained.
G.A.B. Girls came to stand for "Girls Against Bullying Girls." Her parents helped her set up the Facebook page and a website, and ordered bracelets and t-shirts.