Sherman Oaks Teen Creates Anti-Bullying App
Natalie Hampton turned the hardest years of her life into a new app that can help other kids.
The 16-year-old from Sherman Oaks, CA has created “Sit With Us,” a free mobile app that allows students to become “ambassadors” and privately invite other kids to join them in the cafeteria or lunchroom. Users may also find an “open table” where they can sit with other people. The app can help kids always find a lunch buddy and avoid the humiliation and embarrassment of being publicly rejected or isolated.
Hampton experienced bullying in her own life in seventh and eight grade, and said she spent her entire seventh grade year eating alone.
“I want to use social media, which can be harmful, and use it for a change and do something good,” she told the L.A. Daily News.
Hampton’s app launched on Sept. 9. She told NPR that so far, the results have been very positive, and people are already posting open lunches at her school.
“I’m very excited that things are already kicking off with a great start,” said Hampton, who’s now a well-adjusted junior in high school. “I felt like, with my story, it was my job to stand up and do something about all the kids who feel like this every day. And I wanted to create something that would address bullying, but in a positive way.”
“Sit With Us” can be found on the Apple App Store. It’s available for the iPhone and iPad.