WASHINGTON - Dreams Work, Inc. and United Way of the National Capital Area (NCA) have partnered to launch "Don't Bully; B.U.L.L.Y. (Be yoU, Learn 2 Love Yourself)", a year-long anti-bullying campaign that uses the arts to actively engage area youth to understand the causes and effects of bullying and stress the importance of self-love. The "Don't Bully; B.U.L.L.Y." campaign spans the DC/Maryland/Virginia region, and includes features a short film, "Strings Dream", that examines the bully and the person being bullied; "Strings Dream" screenings and youth led, peer-to-peer discussions at area schools; community town hall meetings; videography training classes; and public service announcements featuring prominent local figures. "Strings Dream premieres on March 25, 2011, which was also proclaimed as "Don't Bully Day" by DC Mayor Vincent Gray.
"A lack of understanding differences and low self-esteem are common reasons for bullying," said Anwan "Big G" Glover, actor, musician and co-founder of Dreams Work, Inc., a Washington based nonprofit organization that uses the arts to teach social issues to youth and their surrounding communities. "The B.U.L.L.Y. campaign encourages youth to use their emotional and social toolboxes – parents, teachers, conversations and talents – as resources to make better decisions and increase their self-esteem and self-confidence."
"We are proud to launch the B.U.L.L.Y. campaign in conjunction with our Youth Violence Prevention and Gang Intervention initiative", said Leslie W. Graves, SVP of Community Impact for United Way NCA. "B.U.L.L.Y. allows youth to be part of the solution to end bullying, teaching them how to research and express important social issues and use arts to communicate what they learned to their peers." United Way NCA will also help identify schools and community partners that can further facilitate participation and results in the B.U.L.L.Y. program.
"Strings Dream" features appearances by recording artists, Raheem DeVaughn and Byron Cage; and nationally syndicated radio personality, Russ Parr, and was directed by Jamal Spratley, co-founder of The Circle of H.O.P.E. (Healing Our Personal Environment). "Strings Dream" premiere will be held at Community of Hope A.M.E. Church in Hillcrest Heights, Md.
Dreams Work, Inc. is a community based non-profit organization that services youth through the utilization of the arts. Dreams Work, Inc. staffers engage youth in schools and various communities, providing a proactive way for participants to fulfill their dreams. Founded in 2010, Dreams Work, Inc. continuously strives to meet the needs of youth by providing them with the opportunity to gain life-building skills using the arts, using their talents through performance to spread awareness and education about various social issues throughout the community. Dreams Work, Inc. operates through four components: the Dream Academy, Urban Theater Project, and the Tayon Glover Leadership Academy.
More than any other local organization, United Way of the National Capital Area realizes the interconnectedness of our region and the people who live here. Focusing on the critical areas of Education, Income and Health – the building blocks of a good quality of life – United Way and our member charities not only provide immediate relief of social problems affecting our community, but also work to alleviate the underlying causes of these issues.
Serving the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia, and Montgomery and Prince George's Counties for more than 35 years, we work to inspire acts of caring, deliver hope and improve lives.