Pop star Demi Lovato joins battle against bullying

By John Croman
Bloomington, MN — For rising pop star Demi Lovato, the fight against bullying is more than just a worthy cause. It’s rooted in her own experiences as a 7th grader in Texas.

“They were calling me names that wouldn’t make sense to call a 7th grader,” Lovato told KARE Friday, “I just remember becoming really depressed afterward when I left school felt I didn’t have any friends. I lost a lot of weight. I was just trying to figure out all the reasons why.”

Lovato, in the Twin Cities for a Target Center concert date and a fan event at the Mall of America Saturday, spent her Friday evening at the PACER Center in Bloomington. She helped the agency launch its anti-bullying web site, Teens Against Bullying dot org.

The site is an online toolbox for young people struggling with bullying, designed to reach victims as well as those who witness the practice and don’t always have the courage to intervene.

“We know 160,000 children stay home from school everyday because they’re bullied,” PACER executive director Paula Goldberg told KARE, “And we receive letters and calls from these parents and children at PACER about these situation looking for guidance.”

At age 16, even with movies and hit records under her belt and a starring role in the Disney Channel sitcom Sonny With a Chance, Lovato says she still feels the sting of the verbal abuse she received in person and in cyberspace from classmates. Full story.


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