- THE CHALLENGE
To increase awareness of the harmful effects of bullying and promote prevention best practices nationally.
- KEY RESULTS
- Created and disseminated national awareness of bullying prevention best practices
- Increased StopBullying.gov's presence on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram by hundreds of thousands of followers
For 15 years, Widmeyer led the Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) bullying prevention work. Over this time, we launched the first federal bullying prevention initiative, and led the effort nationally to raise awareness of bullying as a public health issue, empowering community leaders to adopt best practices for prevention and response at the local level.
As part of this work, we created targeted outreach materials, user guides, training materials, online continuing education modules, and tool kits for parents, teachers, administrators, and school resources officers, among others. Our partnership network included more than 100 youth-serving, health, and education organizations. In addition to outreach and training materials, Widmeyer also managed content creation, curation, and management of the StopBullying.gov website, as well as the StopBullying.gov Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Widmeyer closely tracked social media trends and implemented best practices in all of StopBullying.gov’s social media efforts to ensure all content performed well with key audiences. While under Widmeyer’s guidance, StopBullying.gov’s Facebook fan-base grew from 36,532 to 213,339 fans (a 484 percent increase) and Twitter following great from 12,190 to 84,925 followers (a 597 percent increase). In June of 2016, Widmeyer launched StopBullying.gov’s Instagram page, which organically gained nearly 1,000 followers in less than four months, without the use of paid promotion. We performed digital landscape research to inform communication strategies, which have increased the reach and resonance of federal bullying prevention messaging.
In the past 10 years, there has been a significant drop in US students between the ages of 12-18 who reported being bullied: from 32% to 22%.