Northern Scot Feature

December 16th, 2004 by admin_hibhub


His body is a colourful collage of body art, his face peppered by piercings, his hair and beard coloured blue and shaved randomly. The Scary Guy visited Lossiemouth High School to lead a workshop with pupils and staff, which aimed to eradicate prejudice and perceptions among those taking part.

However, this is one man who perhaps does not live up to his name.
Scary has been travelling the world for seven years, spreading his message to eliminate anger, hate, violence and death by encouraging pupils not to judge people and to speak out against bullying. He spent a day at the school giving talks and demonstrations with 420 pupils, hoping it would help to stop intimidation in the classroom and playground.

“It is a four-stage process, ” said The Scary Guy. “First, we make them aware what prejudice and perception is. We then let them understand why it happens. “We then show how to turn it around into acceptance and love.” Some pupils were overwhelmed by his inspirational performance. He began his talk by walking into the room and saying nothing. In a split second, there was silence as the children caught their breath. First impressions, it seemed, form a large part of prejudice.
“The whole programme is geared to changing this earth. The problem is a worldwide problem and by teaching them love and not to judge others, we are changing the way they perceive others. This stops prejudice.

“I believe everybody has a bully in them. There is no such thing as bad kids, there is bad behaviour.”

The Scary Guy – his legal name and the one he has on his passport – visits schools all over the UK, many states in the US and other European countries. In big demand, he has a tough schedule but does not mind because he believes what he is doing will help change the world.

“Racism, sexism, ageism and religious issues all account for what’s happening in the world. We have to break those barriers down, and that is what I try a difference, that is why we focus on the children. But you can’t forget the teachers, ” he added. To put his ideas into practice, The Scary Guy then set a challenge.

“There is the seven days and seven nights challenge where you don’t say a negative thing about any person for that time period. We put all the people on what he had achieved.

“I think that he made a great impression on the pupils. This was probably evident at lunchtime when the pupils were going round smiling and hugging each other, ” he added. “Everybody apart from the fourth years took part and I think everybody enjoyed his performance. “It appears that a lot of the children who had been involved in incidents of bullying had thought a lot about what was said.”

Ms Gifford revealed that Lossie High was looking to do some follow-up work and she was delighted that so many staff took part in the after-school session. “Thirty-two members of staff stayed and took part in a workshop with him and it was excellent, ” she said. “I am really pleased and would encourage other schools to consider this option. It has really benefitted the staff and pupils of Lossiemouth High.” to do in the first hour with these kids, ” he said. After initially challenging their thinking, he held teacher-free workshops to continue the thought process. At the end, he conducted a workshop with teachers. “It is the adults of tomorrow that are going to make this at the workshop. “This is not a job. It is a mission. From the time I wake up to the moment I go to bed, I am always thinking about changing the mind set of the world.


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