Turner’s Cartoon Network has teamed up with British triathlete brothers Jonathan Brownlee and Alistair Brownlee for the latest phase of their anti-bullying campaign CN Buddy Network, it has been announced.
The initiative encourages kids and young people to “Be a Buddy, Not a Bully” and aims to raise awareness and empower young people to take positive action against bullying. Cartoon Network is teaming with Childline for the campaign. Childline, run by NSPCC, has cited bullying as the main reason for counselling in children aged 11 and under – with 24% of all Childline counselling sessions in 2015/16 being about the issue.
“As the Childline reports show, bullying is a very real and, sadly, growing issue for children and young people today. Our Cartoon Network audience fall within the prime age group experiencing bullying and it is hugely important for us to address this in a way that is positive, supportive and relevant”, said Ian McDonough, Senior Vice-President and Managing-Director, Turner Northern Europe. “This year’s series of bespoke “Be a Buddy” animations make use of real thoughts and commentary from kids, which we hope will be really powerful and engaging for their peers.”
The Brownlee brothers will appear in an on-air campaign on Cartoon Network, which also features an original series of animated shorts voiced by children who, in their own words, articulate positive messages around friendship, school and appreciating differences. The on-air campaign rolled out yesterday and the PSA featuring the Brownlee brothers can be viewed below.
“We’re really excited to be working with Cartoon Network and ChildLine on this year’s CN Buddy Network anti-bullying campaign”, said Jonathan Brownlee. “Everybody at some point in their life experiences the effects of bullying, so if it is happening to you right now, just know that you’re not alone. I was lucky growing up to have an older brother at school who always had my back and helped me get through tough times whenever I was being picked on.”
“You don’t have to be a superhero to stop bullying, you just need to look out for each other and take action when you see someone in trouble”, commednted Alistair Brownlee. “We believe that bullying at its core is an issue of self-confidence, so we would encourage kids to get out there and take up an activity they absolutely love to help build their self-esteem. Sports gave Jonny and I the confidence to stand up to bullying and not let them get us down. If you’re being bullied, please remember that it’s not your fault, tell a teacher, friend or family member and we promise, things will get better.”