The fear of bullying in schools is confronted before an audience of one thousand as a nationally renowned speaker made a stop in Stroud and Mustang Tuesday afternoon.
The audience sat captivated as Mark Brown explained to middle school students that he hopes his ‘telling it like it is' approach will have everyone listen.
As a victim of bullying, Brown moved from Jamaica to America and now travels across the country explaining he is no longer afraid to be different.
Students said he helped them feel the same.
"It kind of gets everyone's attention that you need to speak up whenever someone bullies you," said Audrey Morrison, a Mustang North Middle School student.
Like so many students across the country, Hunter Smith admits bullying is a problem.
"You never know if you are going to be bullied or what." Smith said. "I know kids that go home every day and cry because of the bullying that happens to them."
Mark Brown says that is enough reason to use his life story to convince children to stop intimidating or attacking each other.
Brown said in 2010, 14 students took their own life because of bullying.
"I have come to realize sticks and stones can break my bones and unkind words can break my heart," Brown said.
Brown told more than one thousand students in the school gymnasium that if more students understand why people are different, then they would treat each other with the same respect given to him during the assembly.
"I know I talk differently," Brown said. "I‘m from a different country but at the end of the day my message is really clear."
Brown's program is offered at no cost to the schools and provided by a company called QSP Inc. The company works to provide school fundraiser across the country.