Nikki Giant co-author of new book Surviving Girlhood: Building Positive Relationships, Attitudes and Self-Esteem to Prevent Teenage Girl Bullying explains how she and co-author Rachel Beddoe are #KeepingItReal! as they launch a campaign to encourage young people to keep it real and not give in to peer pressure in time for Anti-Bullying Week in November.

Being a 21st century teen is no easy job. The thought of being a high school student in the age of Facebook, constant texting, tweeting, and media overload is enough to make us all feel thankful we weren’t born a few decades later.

While young people born into the digital age may know no different, the impact of modern day living can leave its mark. Cyber bullying, peer pressure, body image worries, and unhealthy relationships can leave youth confused and anxious, reinforced by the many poor role models in celebrity culture.

In our work with girls we have witnessed the consequences of these internal and external pressures, manifesting as inauthentic relationships and bullying scenarios. Girls tell us they aspire to be thinner and more attractive to the opposite sex, and for many a life goal is to have plastic surgery or be on the ‘X Factor’.

With these worrying words echoing in our ears, the idea of a girls’ conference and youth campaign was born.  #KeepingItReal is the first conference to be organised by Full Circle Education Solutions, a social enterprise based in South Wales.

The #KeepingItReal conference for teen girls, school staff and youth professionals, will address the key issues young women face, such as body image and identity worries, gender stereotyping and bullying, to inspire, educate, and motivate girls to reach beyond the social and celebrity ideals seen so often in common culture. The event will include workshops and presentations, including from the British and World Champion Windsurfer, Zara Davies, the Young Engineer of the Year, 18 year old Jessica Jones, and Leader of Plaid Cymru and Welsh Government Assembly Member Leanne Wood. #KeepingItReal will be held on October 19th 2012 at the Holiday Inn, Newport.

The #KeepingItReal conference will be the a launch of a wider campaign of the same name, encouraging all young people to ‘keep it real’ by being true to themselves, follow their passions and not give in to peer pressure.

‘Keeping it real’ is a challenge for us all in fast-paced 21st century living. We’re #KeepingItReal….are you?

For bookings or more information about the #KeepingItReal conference and campaign contact

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