ARE YOU AN
LEARN MORE ABOUT BEING AN UPSTANDER AND HOW YOU OR YOUR SCHOOL CAN START TODAY
“All of us have an extraordinary ability to change the world, and GAB strives to be a platform to tap into the inherent yearnings of love, acceptance and corporation.”
“It is time to consider how our work with kids each day will grow a new generations of upstanders.”
What is an
When you see an altercation unfold on the street, what choice do you make? Do you keep walking? Do you stop and gawk? Do you whip out your phone and start taking video? Or do you call for help or take a risk and lend a hand? Then perhaps you’re an upstander.
If you were to ask my students (the experts) what an upstander is, they would define it as follows:
- Someone who does something about a problem, such as bullying
- Someone who takes action
- An upstander is, like, the hero
- Someone who chooses to stand up
Upstanders have been around since the beginning of time. They can be disguised as guardian angels, heroes, good Samaritans or role models. They can be found in every corner of the Earth, including in our classrooms and on our playgrounds.
So, how do we spot them? The upstanders in our schools are the ones that ask the outliers on the sidelines to join in the game. They make space at the lunch table for someone sitting by himself or herself. They turn and make sure everyone is included in a partnership or group. They reach out to make human connections. They smile at others in the hallways and say hello to the people that need it the most. It is not expected or suggested by society. It takes incredible strength and courage. It is a sign of greatness.
And that’s just the beginning.
Upstanders ask questions when they seek to understand the world around them. They always want to know the why? and the how come? Upstanders will ask questions of friends, family, teachers, leaders, and strangers.
Upstanders choose to act, even when it is not convenient, easy, or even safe. Events such as the aftermath of 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, and Hurricane Sandy helped us to see the power of Upstanders in the world beyond school. We heard stories of volunteers handing out food and water to first responders. Stories of men and women shuttling victims to safety, and then going back for others. Stories of friends and neighbors lending a hand or a shoulder to strangers at a time when there was nowhere else to turn.
The most amazing thing about upstanders is that anyone can choose to become one. We have an entire generation of upstanders and potential upstanders in our schools just waiting to lead by example. It is time to start watching them, letting them ask questions, honoring Historic figures like Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela, Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Mahatma Ghandi who made their mark on history through acting as upstanders motivated by love of others. Gab seeks to inspire communities, and cultivate future leaders, through a message of love.
Becoming an upstander is an act of love our world is in great need of.
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