Dominican-American singer Kat Deluna met with PS. 9 students about her fight against bullying in Prospect Heights on Oct. 19. The songstress met with several fourth and fifth graders to talk about her own experience with bullying, and how it can impact a child into adulthood.
“Bullying is a topic that’s very important to me because a lot of people go through bullying and never get over it, and it affects them later on in life,” said Deluna.
The singer was there to support the Real Players Don’t Bully campaign, spearheaded by Playworks — an California-based organization that works in schools nationwide, by providing youth with fun programming that helps improve their social skills and general betterment.
She says that by instilling positive attitudes in children at ages where many first encounter peer tormentors, or may start to pick up bully -like tendencies — she champions anti-bullying initiatives as preventative measure.
“If you start young in someone’s life, like when they’re a child — and you let them know that no matter what people say about you, you can accomplish anything,” said Deluna. “Your value is still there and no one should decide your value. That’s very important to me to give kids the tools to use after elementary, and when they go into high school.”
Deluna played several activities during a recess session, including tag and a relay race, and the kids were thrilled with the presence of the pop star and her support of the campaign, said a program coordinator with Playworks.
“When people come out and show support to the kids — the kids get very excited,” said Tashon Kilkenny.
To commemorate October as Anti-Bullying Month, the organization is promoting its campaign on social media and at hundreds of schools, to encourage youth with programming and positive messages about teamwork and leadership.
The singer also spoke with the youngsters about her latest Spanish single “New Attitude,” which aptly adheres to her consistent belief of empowerment. Deluna said while recording the song, she felt that it had a larger message and she wanted to promote it as such.
“It’s about positive attitude, and before doing that I knew wasn’t just a song because I wanted to inspire the world to have a movement,” she said. “I feel like in life you come to a point where you establish yourself mentally, and you know what your purpose is, and I feel like I love to empower people around me and family, and why not share that with the world?”