It is spectacular to see a young man inspire his peers at school, and the community at large, with his commitment to bullying prevention. At just 17, Jacques St. Pierre founded the “I Will Make It Better” Project to stop bullying, organized a school assembly on the topic, and encouraged his peers to pledge to combat bullying. His efforts reached the ear of Lady Gaga, who added some celebrity firepower as she delivered a special video message supporting his cause.
“The subject line said ‘To Jacques from Lady Gaga,'” he told Nagy (Melanie Nagy of CBC). “It said ‘click on the link below to download the video for your assembly.’ So no questions asked, Lady Gaga sent us a video. I watched it, and I started crying. I’m a huge fan. It’s kind of embarrassing because I love her so much. I couldn’t believe it.”
“In her video addressed to him, Lady Gaga praises St. Pierre for his work to combat bullying, particularly bullying directed at gay and lesbian students.
“I just wanted to tell you how proud I am of you for being such a strong advocate of the LGBT community in your school,” she said. “There should be more little monsters like you.”
Lady Gaga’s message got a strong reaction from students at the school assembly.
“I’m starting to actually realize how big this problem is and I just want to make a difference now,” said one male student.
“I love Lady Gaga and it means so much to me that she could do that for us and support us through this,” said another.
St. Pierre said he was elated to receive such high-profile support.
“Young or old, people know who Lady Gaga is, because she’s such a character and she does so much to stand up against bullying in any way she can. And someone as inspiring as her, taking 20 minutes out of her day to write down a speech, sit in front of a Teleprompter, get all made up and read it to us directly at our school. It’s fantastic.”
Bullying prevention is much more powerful and effective if we all work together to combat it – it is EVERYONE’S responsibility. Jacques’ determination to take an active stand to stop bullying as a young adult is inspiring, and in an effort to support his work, we sent him a copy of “Bullying Epidemic: Not Just Child’s Play.” Here’s what he had to say:
This email is much overdue. I wanted to sincerely thank you for your kind letter and for the copy of your book. It has been an incredible resource as I travel around and speak at events. I have been able to feel confident in my statistics and knowledge thanks to you.
I am inspired by your work and greatly appreciate your support. I am sure that our paths will cross again one day as we are both tackling this issue, but I thank you and please let me know if there is anything I can do to help you out in return.
Jacques St. Pierre
Founder, “I Will Make It Better” Project