Build-A-Bear Workshop Supports "Stop Cyberbullying" Program to Help Protect Children, Teens and Tweens
2009-10-01 11:44 ET - News Release
ST. LOUIS, MO
-- (MARKET WIRE)
Build-A-Bear Workshop®, in partnership with WiredSafety.org, is promoting
October as Stop
Cyberbullying Month at Build-A-Bear Workshop stores and in its online
virtual world, buildabearville.com®. The
interactive entertainment retailer of customized stuffed animals is
focusing on online safety education and how to help prevent cyberbullying
with a number of programs.
Cyberbullying is the use of digital technology as a weapon by one minor to
hurt another minor and it is a growing problem. The Build-A-Bear Workshop
online safety program is geared towards children and parents and has been
developed in association with leading cyber safety expert Parry Aftab,
executive director and founder of WiredSafety.org. The organization is the
world's largest cyber safety group that aims to increase online safety
awareness by providing families with resources and usage guidelines. The
organization also operates StopCyberbullying.org.
In early 2009, Build-A-Bear Workshop received the 2009 WiredKids Best of
the Web Award sponsored by WiredSafety.org and recently the company was
included in the WiredSafety StopCyberbullying Toolkit for Schools, a free
resource for educators sponsored by industry leaders. The company has also
earned the Socially Safe Seal and Socially Safe Kids Seal from
SociallySafe.org, for its Web site and virtual world.
In addition to the online and in store Stop Cyberbullying program,
Build-A-Bear Workshop is participating with other corporate leaders and
child advocacy groups in a first ever Stop Cyberbullying Coalition event to
be held on Oct. 13 in Washington D.C. on Capitol Hill. Youth cyber experts
from WiredSafety will represent the teen and tween viewpoint along with
Build-A-Bear Workshop and other companies who will share cyber safety
policies and practices.
According to Parry Aftab, who is advising Build-A-Bear Workshop on the Stop
Cyberbullying Program, "In recent polls conducted by WiredSafety,
cyberbullying has been seen in kids as young as seven, with an increase in
cyberbullying among fourth-graders. I am pleased that top brands, such as
Build-A-Bear Workshop, have stepped up to the challenge to help provide
safe online spaces for kids. This is a critical issue; with leading
companies working together, we are accomplishing our mutual goals of making
safety in the online space a top priority."
"Our objective is to be part of the solution to stop cyberbullying and to
help ensure that buildabearville.com is as safe as it can be," said Maxine
Clark, founder and chief executive bear of Build-A-Bear Workshop. "We are a
company committed to children and families and protecting kids is paramount
to us. We are pleased to work in association with WiredSafety.org and other
corporate leaders to address online safety for children."
The Build-A-Bear Workshop company-wide Stop Cyberbullying program is
comprised of several online and in store elements.
-- Citizens of buildabearville.com can take the
WiredSafety Pledge to receive a virtual safety sash for their avatars.
-- Build-A-Bearville® will feature a
meter in Town Square and as citizens click the Safety Pledge they will
be counted until they fill the meter which will allow all citizens of the
virtual world to receive a unique Stop, Block and Tell move for their
-- Build-A-Bearville is providing online Stop, Block and
Tell safety tips for kids as well as resources and recommendations for
-- A map of Build-A-Bearville and the online Safety Pledge will be
available to all Guests.
-- ChloeRocks(TM), the star of The Build-A-Bearville Chloe Show, is
featured in Online Safety Public Service Announcements in store.
"Build-A-Bear Workshop is helping to create awareness for this important
safety messaging for kids; we are committed to the goal of making our
virtual world a safe and fun extension of the Build-A-Bear Workshop
in-store experience with enhanced games, imagination, education and
learning," said Dave Finnegan, chief information and logistics bear of
Build-A-Bear Workshop. "We are proud to be one of the first recipients of
the WireSafety.org Socially Safe Seal for Build-A-Bearville and we will
continue to engage in a dialogue with parents, technology experts and
industry organizations to design safe online spaces for kids on the web."
About Build-A-Bear Workshop
Build-A-Bear Workshop, Inc. is the leading and only global company that
offers an interactive make-your-own stuffed animal retail-entertainment
experience. Founded in 1997, the company and its franchisees currently
operate more than 400 Build-A-Bear Workshop stores worldwide, including
company-owned stores in the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada, the United
Kingdom, Ireland and France, and franchise stores in Europe, Asia,
Australia and Africa. In 2007, the interactive experience was enhanced --
all the way to CyBEAR(TM) space -- with the launch of
buildabearville.com®, the company's virtual world stuffed with fun. The
company was named to the 2009 FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For®
list. Build-A-Bear Workshop (NYSE: BBW) posted total revenue of $468
million in fiscal 2008. For more information, call 888.560.BEAR (2327) or
visit the company's award-winning Web site at http://www.buildabear.com/.
Parental permission may be required to access buildabearville.com. Visit
buildabearville.com for details.
About Parry Aftab
Parry Aftab has devoted her expertise, since 1995, to enhancing
cyber-security for business and governmental entities, as well as
preventing and investigating cyber-crimes, especially those that arise in
the workplace or relate to Internet predators. In this field, she often
wears two hats -- one is her commercial role of the cyber-lawyer focused on
keeping businesses safe in cyberspace and improving e-commerce and trust,
while the other is her pro-bono hat where she is heavily involved in
Internet safety and security for children, senior citizens and victims of
cyber-stalking and abuse. In her pro-bono role, she runs the world's
largest online safety and help group that works closely with all major law
enforcement agencies worldwide. To learn more about Parry's charitable
work, visit WiredSafety.org.
WiredSafety.org was the world's first, and is the largest, Internet safety
and help group, comprised of thousands of unpaid volunteers. It is
dedicated to helping families enjoy the new technologies, safely,
privately, and responsibly. WiredSafety.org's work has increasingly focused
on children, tweens, and teens. It serves as the umbrella organization for
Teenangels, WiredKids, and StopCyberbullying, among others and is launching
the StopCyberbullying Toolkit, a free resource of schools.
We would like to thank you for your interest in covering our business. As
you write your story, we would ask that you use our full Name: Build-A-Bear
Workshop® and that when referencing the process of making stuffed animals
you use the word "make" not "build."
Build-A-Bear Workshop is our well-known trade name and our registered
trademark of Build-A-Bear Retail Management, Inc. Build-A-Bear Workshop®
should only be used in capital letters to refer to our products and
services and should not be used as a verb.
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