Trine Graduate Honored For Anti-bullying Work
By: Mike Stiles - Friday, June 7, 2024

Elayna Hasty (photo courtesy of Trine University)

(ANGOLA) - A recent Trine University graduate was named a recipient of a national award honoring those who work to create a kinder, more inclusive and more accepting world.

PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center recognized Elayna Hasty of Angola, with its 2024 Unity Award for her work with G.A.B. Girls, or Girls Against Bullying Girls, the nonprofit she created to help combat bullying.

In a statement on the PACER’s website, the organization says Elayna’s workshops to schools and groups were designed to not only to help empower those who are bullied, but encourage others to be upstanders. They say Elayna’s initiatives have helped to raise awareness about the impact of bullying and have provided vital support to those who have been affected, creating a safer and more compassionate environment for all.

Founded in 2006, PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center leads social change with a goal of preventing childhood bullying.

Elayna said she was "incredibly excited" and honored to receive the award. She says she has been promoting PACER"s Unity Day every October since she was in middle school, which is why receiving this award feels so special.

Elayna started G.A.B. Girls after she was bullied in elementary school. Elayna says she had a lack of identity, which caused her to struggle a lot in school. She says every day was a constant battle of name calling, being pushed into lockers, and the feeling of never being good enough.

When a close friend shifted to homeschooling to escape the bullying, Elayna decided she needed to act. Elayna says she wanted to help others who were silently struggling and encourage her friends to stand up for themselves.

G.A.B. Girls began as a Facebook account where Elayna posted statistics about bullying as well as positive quotes. A year later, Elayna recorded her first radio interview on the YesFM Christian Radio station. She held her first workshop at the YMCA of Steuben County in 2013. She has now presented 74 workshops, attended by more than 3,500 people, on topics such as teamwork, positivity, self-worth and preventing bullying.


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