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HRH CROWN PRINCESS MARY JOINED 2,006 CHILDREN ON A FUN RUN AGAINST BULLYING

“I am a good friend” was the message displayed on the backs of HRH Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, Johanne Schmidt-Nielsen and 2,006 children who ran against bullying in this year’s Free of Bullying Children’s Run in Copenhagen today. The run marks the fight against bullying and how important it is to maintain a concerted and preventive effort – already from a very young age.

We are most successful at preventing bullying when we proactively develop and support children’s communities and help them to be good school friends. This was the message that united 2,006 jubilant children and their parents today when they gathered in Fælledparken in Copenhagen for the 12th annual Free of Bullying Children’s Run organised by The Mary Foundation and Save the Children Denmark.

The children took part in the race in four groups, and both Crown Princess Mary and Save the Children Denmark’s new Secretary-General, Johanne Schmidt-Nielsen, were there to join the many children on the one kilometre run as the starting pistol fired. As soon as the first group of children reached the finishing line, Johanne Schmidt-Nielsen took charge of handing out medals to all the tenacious runners, while the Crown Princess headed straight back to the starting area so she could run again with the second group of children – and then with the third and the fourth groups as well.

This was the first time Johanne Schmidt-Nielsen participated in the Free of Bullying Children’s Run.

“I am overwhelmed by the amazing atmosphere that has permeated the entire day. Shining a light on positive relationships among children and doing it with children, and seeing them engage so enthusiastically in activities that are about tolerance, respect and care for each other has been a wonderful and life-affirming experience for me,” said Johanne Schmidt-Nielsen.

In addition to running against bullying, the children participated in various activities based on the four core values of the Free of Bullying anti-bullying programme: tolerance, respect, care and courage. Through a series of fun games in the park, the children practised being brave and respectful and seeing each other’s differences as a strength; and in a quiet corner, they could show one another care by participating in Free of Bullying massage activities.

“This year, we have placed an even greater emphasis on the four values of Free of Bullying, since they are central to the work in cultivating inclusive children’s communities where everyone is welcome. Parents are important role models in children’s social lives, and many of them look for practical tools to help them support children’s communities. That’s why we have also provided good advice to parents on how they can advocate for the four values at home,” explained Helle Østergaard, Director of The Mary Foundation.

The annual Free of Bullying Children’s Run has been taking place in both Aarhus and Copenhagen since 2008. On 25 May 2019, 542 children ran against bullying in Mindeparken in Aarhus.

The run is organised in collaboration with Sparta. DHL and WHEAT are sponsors of the event.

Attached: Photos from the run © Jakob Carlsen / Free of Bullying.

For more information

Birgitte Krogh Therkelsen, Communication Officer, The Mary Foundation, bkt@maryfonden.dk / +45 30 32 48 58
Mette Noppenau, Press Officer, Save the Children Denmark, men@redbarnet.dk / +45 20 12 18 58

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mary_fonden Ensomhed er et stigende problem blandt unge. Det vigtigste, vi kan gøre, er at tale om det, række ud og bryde tabuet. Vi skal forstå ensomhed for at kunne bekæmpe den. Mary Fondens vision er, at alle mennesker skal have adgang til nære og respektfulde relationer, hvor andre er noget for dem, og hvor de kan være noget for andre. #alleharrettilathøretil
mary_fonden Hvordan styrker vi unges sociale trivsel? Vores projekt Me&We handler om at styrke efterskoleelevers sociale kompetencer og relationer. I dag lander dette materialekatalog sammen med vandflasker og kopper på de 31 efterskoler, der er del af næste fase af projektet i det kommende skoleår. Kataloget består af viden og aktiviteter, der skal støtte elevernes forståelse af sig selv og hinanden. Læs mere via link i bio. Me&We er er samarbejde mellem Mary Fonden, @justhuman.dk, @efterskolerne og @tuborgfondet.
mary_fonden Er mobning blevet til isolering af nogle børn? Det spørgsmål stiller mobbeforsker Helle Rabøl Hansen i fagbladet Folkeskolen på baggrund af stigende ensomhed blandt børn og unge. "Nogle børn og unge oplever at være luft for de andre. Derfor vælger de at være tavse i løbet af skoledagen, for det er da bedre end aktivt at blive chikaneret af de andre i klassen. Så kommer lærerne og siger: 'Du byder ikke nok ind i undervisningen' eller 'Du skal ikke være så tilbageholdende'. Men Eva på 13 år har ikke lyst til at byde ind og dermed gøre opmærksom på sig selv. Så er det bedre slet ikke at blive set." Hun opfordrer skolerne til at tænke trivsel og deres indsats mod mobning bredere - og fx medtænke ensomhed i indsatsen. Læs mere i artiklen fra fagbladet Folkeskolen. Link i bio 👆🏼 #alleharrettilathøretil #ensomhed #mobning
mary_fonden Nu begynder forskellige sports og fritidsaktiviteter for børn så småt at starte op igen. Når aktiviteterne begynder igen, er det vigtigt at huske at arbejde for den gode klubkultur. Mary Fondens projekt Antibulli er et antimobberedskab til børnehåndboldtrænere. Det består af konkrete råd og øvelser til træningen af 6-12-årige. Målet er at skabe en hold- og klubkultur med høj tolerance, hvor alle respekterer hinanden, taler ordentligt og hjælper hinanden, så klubben er et rart sted at være, uanset hvor god man er til håndbold. Grundtanken er, at et stærkt sammenhold og gode børnefællesskaber forebygger eksklusion og mobning. Link til Antibulli.dk i bio.
mary_fonden I dag optager vi til en film om noget, der rammer ned i kernen af vores arbejde. At alle har ret til at høre til og føle sig som en del af noget større end sig selv. Det budskab og det arbejde er kun blevet endnu mere aktuelt under Corona-krisen. Stay tuned, når vi offentliggør filmen om nogle uger.