“Constantly interacting with students about depression, mental health, compassion, empathy, and anti-bullying beginning from the moment they enter the education system until they receive their diploma is imperative. We have to keep having the conversation at every level of development.”Jasmine Babers
Something as simple as a conversation between two people has the power to start a movement that will change the lives of thousands, and even make a measurable impact on the world. This November at the IBPA Conference in Chicago, we will facilitate thousands of impactful conversations, host over 80 speakers, and welcome well over 650 attendees to the event.
One of the most anticipated keynote speakers at the conference, who also knows all about the power of conversation, is Jasmine Babers, founder of Love Girls Magazine. Asked how Love Girls Magazine began, Jasmine says, “I started LGM at the height of the cyberbullying crisis in response to my sister and my best friend being survivors of cyberbullying.” She continues, saying that the community she was building and magazine were intended to be “a safe space where young women could go to share their stories and lift up others.” LGM has become just that.
Love Girls Magazine is a nonprofit, girl-ran organization created to build self-esteem by “providing young women leadership opportunities and a safe place to tell their stories.” What started as a magazine has expanded into events with hundreds of attendees and participants, including Girls On Fire and the Love Awards.
We reached out to Jasmine as part of the new IBPA 2019 Presenter Interview Series, which will highlight four speakers who will join us November 7-9 in Chicago, to learn more about her upcoming talk, Love Girls Magazine, and the importance of self-esteem. On November 9 at 11:45, LOVE Girls Magazine Founder Jasmine Babers will give a keynote address, titled, “What Everyone Ought to Know About Self-Esteem and Young People.”
Jasmine’s youth-led nonprofit allows her peers to change and improve their world. According to Jasmine, young people need to be engaged and empowered to be a bigger part of the solution to societal problems, including bullying. Jasmine says:
“Oftentimes, we aren’t letting young people be a part of the solutions. It’s odd actually, to think about solutions to youth-based problems, without actually asking young people about their experiences and what solutions they have to solve the problem, because in actuality they are closest to the problem and therefore closest to the solution, yet nobody is calling them to the table.”
Are you ready to bring positivity to your school’s campus and address the mental health of your students? Join us at IBPA 2019 to…
- Learn strategies for positive school climate
- Receive information to create or enhance your student engagement efforts
- Design an inclusive school community program
- Discuss strategies to reduce social-emotional barriers to increase student learning
- Network with like-minded youth-serving partners
- Gain access to a resource room packed with solutions from exhibitors and sponsors from across the globe
- Hear from dozens of speakers, including Jasmine Babers
Read the full interview transcript between IBPA and Jasmine Babers below. To hear Jasmine in person at the 2019 IBPA Conference, join us in Chicago and attend Jasmine’s keynote address at 11:45 AM on Saturday. View the full agenda here and register for the 2019 IBPA Conference here.
Question: Why did you choose to present at the 2019 IBPA Conference in Chicago?
Jasmine Babers: It was really exciting to have an opportunity to share ideas and get connected to so many amazing educators, thinkers, and influencers! It also seemed like an opportunity to talk about self-esteem and bullying, so I was happy to participate!
Question: At the event, what are you most looking forward to?
JB: Of course, the people!
Question: What will you be speaking about and what do you hope attendees will take away from your talk?
JB: I’ll be talking about bullying from a young person’s perspective and what a world would look like if we all committed ourselves to anti-bullying. I’ll also be sharing some personal stories and some stories from girls in the magazine!
Question: How and why did you create LOVE Girls Magazine?
JB: I started LGM at the height of the cyberbullying crisis in response to my sister and my best friend being survivors of cyberbullying. The magazine was meant to be a safe space where young women could go to share their stories and lift up others!
Question: What impact have you seen your community make?
JB: Just the shift in how we view young women as leaders has been remarkable. Not only have we seen the number of bullying cases decrease dramatically, but we’ve also seen vast improvements in self-esteem and self-image, and that’s the best part.
Question: What role does mental health play in bullying prevention?
JB: We’ve all seen the data about how we act towards others when we are dealing with internal struggles. we cant talk about solutions to bullying if we aren’t talking about self-esteem. When we have a positive self-image and high self-esteem, we are kinder to ourselves and to others. We are also more compassionate and more empathetic, meaning not only are we healthier as individuals, but our communities are healthier as well.
Question: What is the most significant issue schools and students face in terms of preventing bullying?
JB: Often times we aren’t letting young people be a part of the solutions. It’s odd actually, to think about solutions to youth-based problems, without actually asking young people about their experiences and what solutions they have to solve the problem, because in actuality they are closest to the problem and therefore closest to the solution, yet nobody is calling them to the table.
Question: Should mental health be a more significant focus in the education of youth, and if so, how would you recommend schools tackle this challenging subject?
JB: This is a loaded question with no easy answer. We have to do better for our young people and their education just in general, and radically rethink how young people learn and interact. The monitoring and constant evaluation of mental health is absolutely essential, and our education system is the ideal place to execute this type of analysis, however, it isn’t built or equipt to carry out this kind of work and so we need to start with conversations about rethinking our education systems as a whole, but we can think about the complex systems it would take to eradicate mental health problems in our young people. I believe it’s possible, but we have a long way to go.
Question: What is the importance of compassion in schools? How can schools facilitate a compassionate culture?
JB: Teaching and fostering compassion is critical. Again, make it a priority to integrate empathy into every single lesson we teach and make sure mental health screenings and counseling sessions are a required part of young people’s education.
Question: What tips do you have for schools working to create a positive school climate/culture?
JB: Work with your young people to understand where the gaps are and to create solutions. Culture change begins with conversations. Constantly interacting with students about depression, mental health, compassion, empathy, and anti-bullying beginning from the moment they enter the education system until they receive their diploma is imperative. We have to keep having the conversation at every level of development.
Question: Any final thoughts for fellow presenters and attendees who will join you at the 2019 IBPA Conference?
JB: I am SO honored to be a part of this and really thankful for the opportunity to share my ideas!