Flint-area kids take part in Gracie Bullyproof Summer Camp - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Flint-area kids take part in Gracie Bullyproof Summer Camp

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(06/17/13) - It's not your typical introduction to a summer camp.

From the get-go, these kids were up and moving.

"For the kids, the most important thing is they're having the most fun of their entire lives. So it's got to be high energy, it's got to be very fun the whole time," said Rener Gracie, of Gracie Bullyproof System.

But for every fun action, a serious reaction.

"And the key is to instill these principles of confidence, assertiveness," Gracie said.

Some of these kids have been targets of bullies in school or on the street. They're taking part in the 'Gracie Bullyproof Summer Camp', sponsored by the Genesee Health System.

Inside the 'Center for Hope' gym, they learn how bullies think and who they target.

In one scenario, Gracie is the bully - who pushes a kid, causing him to drop his books. She says with confidence, the correct body language and the right words, any one of these kids can stop an attack.

Andrew Kelley was the first to show he could stand up to a bully.

Gracie and the rest of the Gracie Bullyproof team travel the country teaching this technique.

"If we can teach them how to stand up straight, speak clearly with eye contact and good posture, that'll deter 95 percent of the bullies," he  said.

For the other 5 percent," We don't teach the kids how to fight fire with fire, we fight fire with water," she said.

The kids are taught non-violent Jiu-Jitsu moves, to neutralize their bully until help arrives.

Just an hour in to their week-long camp, confidence is growing.

"I'm standing up for myself," Kelley said.

This camp is already full, but there's more information on how to get your child involved in this anti-bullying effort HERE

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