The sad truth about bullying is that everyone has been the target of it at one point or another. It doesn't matter your gender, sexual orientation, race, or age. One amazing young lady was the target of such bullying. Singer-songwriter Lizzie Sider was the target of a large amount of bullying when she was younger. But rather than taking it, she decided she wanted to stop it. She now runs the anti-bullying non-profit "Nobody Has The Power To Ruin Your Day." Her organization has reached over 2,400 schools and has now gone international.
Recently, I was given a chance to interview Lizzie about her life and passions, as well as her past that led to this organization's existence. When asked about what started her fight against bullying, Lizzie gave an answer that I believe many people could resonate with.
"When I was in elementary school, I was teased and bullied by some other kids in my grade. It was specifically a group of girls who kept belittling me and making fun of me consistently. It would happen almost every day, and many of my days, I would come home crying because I didn't know how to control what was going on or why it was happening," explained Sider. The unfortunate truth is that she is very far from the only one who has felt this way.
Many people want bullying to end. But for Lizzie, wanting wasn't enough, she had to do something.
"After sitting on it for a while, I decided that I wanted to go into schools personally and speak directly to the kids about bullying. I had recently begun homeschooling because of the schedule demands of my professional music career, so I had the time to do so. I created an original 30-minute assembly that combined music, a strong message, positivity and encouragement, themed "Nobody Has The Power To Ruin Your Day," which is the exact phrase my dad used to say to me when I was younger, and what ultimately helped me overcome my experiences with bullying."
One amazing thing about Lizzie is her heart for the kids she meets.
"Students will come up to me after an assembly and open up to me about unthinkable situations, or they will reach out to me on social media talking about having suicidal thoughts ... I will always be a support system for them and I will even consult my parents from time to time on the most serious situations. But knowing that that kind of pain is out there inside of children and trying my very best to help them cope with it or get rid of it can be very emotionally challenging."
When asked about how she feels now that her organization has gone big she had this to say: "I always knew that I wanted to live my life in a way that was inspiring to other people, and be a source of good things and light to others. However when I embarked on this anti-bullying mission, I never imagined it growing this big and changing so many lives, nor did I imagine my passion to grow so big with it. My favorite thing is when a student I saw two years ago will send me a message, saying "I still wear my wristband everyday! NOBODY HAS THE POWER TO RUIN YOUR DAY!!!!" It's extremely humbling and exciting to be making a difference like I am."
I can't say I have met any other 18 year olds with this much passion for a cause. She was driven, excited, and looking forward to the future of her music and her fight against bullying!