Founder and President of Bully Proof Kids International, Gabrielle Susanna Clarke, encourages more young people to take the initiative to find solutions to the problems that affect them.
“I think if you have the right intention, the determination and the passion, you should not hesitate because you are only helping to build our country. Dark. As young people, we need to take the lead, share our ideas and make our voices heard,” she said.
The Immaculate Conception High School student’s advice comes from her own experience in starting a foundation to fight bullying, which she experienced.
“I was bullied in first grade by a sixth grader; and later my brother was also bullied. So, I realized that I really had to do something,” Clarke said.
“This eventually led to the birth of Bully Proof Kids at age 12. That’s when I started sharing my experience and that of others as well. I believe that if this problem is left unaddressed, it can lead to crime and violence, which is already a problem in our society right now,” she said.
For her advocacy, Clarke received the Prime Minister’s National Youth Achievement Award for 2021 in the area of youth development.
“I’m really, really honored and grateful. It wasn’t something I expected to happen. I could barely contain my excitement. I just couldn’t believe it at the time,” a- she declared.
“However, I did not receive the award solely for my work with Bully Proof Kids, but also for my efforts at the Child Protection and Family Services Agency (CPFSA) and other businesses, and I intend to continue working with them,” she noted.
The trophy, along with a cash prize from Sagicor Bank, was presented by Prime Minister Andrew Holness in a hybrid ceremony held last month.
Clarke said she would invest the prize money in Bully Proof, including her outreach activities.
“We will use some of the money to buy gifts for students when we visit schools, especially now that they have fully resumed face-to-face lessons,” she noted.
The young pioneer said she was grateful for the love and support of her family and friends, noting that they were overjoyed at her achievement.
“To say they are proud is an understatement. We had a little reunion,” she shared with a laugh.
Clarke, who said she was guided in her actions by the Holy Scriptures, advised young people “not to let anyone despise you because you are young, but to set an example to believers, in word, conduct, love, faith. , and in purity.
The Prime Minister’s National Youth Achievement Awards recognize the outstanding contributions of young people between the ages of 15 and 29 in the country and throughout the diaspora.
Honors are given in areas such as agriculture, environmental protection, music, sports, entrepreneurship, science and technology, leadership, arts and culture.
Clarke was among 15 people who received awards for 2021.