At least 1 in 3 adolescent students in Canada have reported being bullied recently. Children and youth who are bullied suffer more headaches, stomach aches, depression and anxiety and have a higher risk of suicide. Mental health problems associated with bullying tend to last until later in life. We also know that children who bully others are 37% more likely than children who do not bully to commit criminal offences as an adult.
The WITS LEADS program is delivered by RCMP members to improve the school community’s ability to address bullying and cyber-bullying in a proactive and timely manner by providing education, prevention and coping strategies. The program is delivered by RCMP members on the ground who help educate, motivate and support youth to stop bullying – so that every child can grow up happy, healthy and safe.
The program promotes four simple conflict resolution strategies:
W – Walk away
I – Ignore
T – Talk it out
S – Seek help
The evidence based WITS LEADS program is delivered to students in grades 4-6. RCMP members facilitate interactive sessions in the classroom with support from teachers. Students become Honorary Constables and take an oath against bullying.
Through participation in WITS LEADS, young people:
- Build positive and healthy relationships with their peers
- Recognize risky situations and reduce or prevent victimization
- Cope with the consequences of bullying and make choices for – better outcomes
- Stay focused on a positive path to success and well-being
- Attend school, participate and achieve better grades
- Enjoy positive relationships with police
There are numerous RCMP detachments in communities across Canada that would value the opportunity to implement our Foundation programs. With your support, we can deliver community programs like WITS LEADS across Canada for at-risk children and youth.