Anti-Bullying Blog: Let's Stop The Hate!

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Hi Cambio readers! My name is Emily-Anne Rigal. I am an 18-year-old high school senior from Virginia and I am so excited to begin blogging for Cambio!

In addition to being known as "Schmiddlebopper" on YouTube, I also run a non-profit program called WeStopHate! WeStopHate is dedicated to raising self-esteem in teens (teen-esteem) through various social media platforms that engage teens to help each other gain confidence. This is because we believe that teens who are happy with themselves won't put others down.

Getty Images for Nickelodeon

Hi Cambio readers! My name is Emily-Anne Rigal. I am an 18-year-old high school senior from Virginia and I am so excited to begin blogging for Cambio!

In addition to being known as "Schmiddlebopper" on YouTube, I also run a non-profit program called WeStopHate! WeStopHate is dedicated to raising self-esteem in teens (teen-esteem) through various social media platforms that engage teens to help each other gain confidence. This is because we believe that teens who are happy with themselves won't put others down.

WeStopHate, however, is more than just an anti-bullying program... It's a call to action to stop hate: stop hating on yourself, stop hating on others, stop letting others hate on you. I was inspired to start WeStopHate because I was bullied as a child. In elementary school, my classmates tormented me for being overweight. Each morning I crossed my fingers in hopes that it would not be a day when the teacher would let my class pick our own partners because I rarely had someone to pair up with. Not having a partner was mortifying, but even worse was the daily loneliness I endured. It got so bad that I eventually switched schools. Throughout middle and high school, my self-confidence gradually increased. The more I accepted myself, the less disconnected I felt from my peers and the happier I became.

WeStopHate's first video was uploaded to YouTube in July of 2010. Since then, it has attracted the support of many famous celebrities, including Lady Gaga! After spending the day with Lady Gaga for the 2011 TeenNick HALO Awards, she made a video for WeStopHate's YouTube channel.

Even though WeStopHate has attracted support from Hollywood stars, what I am most proud of is how the WeStopHate teen community – that call themselves Boppers – has come together to help spread this message. If you're passionate about stopping hate, too, and want to get involved with WeStopHate, here are the best ways to take part in the movement:

- Record a 1-2 minute video
- Write a Love, Yourself letter
- Post your favorite inspirational photo on WSH's Facebook
- Wear a WeStopHate wristband
- Feature us on your website or blog
- Share WeStopHate with your friends on Facebook and Twitter

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