Student Standouts: 11.4.20
mikaylah “mikki” norfolk of the wilson school
Fifth-grader Mikaylah “Mikki” Norfolk knows a thing or two about perseverance. Before coming to The Wilson School, she was the victim of terrible bullying. While the experience had a tremendous impact, she didn’t let it define her. In fact, it motivated her to help other kids dealing with similar issues. She founded We Rise Up 4 Kids, a nonprofit dedicated to providing resources and professional help to children and youth impacted by bullying and other trauma.
What has helped you along your journey with bullying and trauma?
My friends and family definitely have helped a lot, along with just doing what makes me happy. I also went to therapy and learned about coping mechanisms.
What advice would you give kids who are dealing with similar circumstances?
I know it’s hard right now, but you’ve got to keep going. This won’t last forever, and it’s going to get better.
What does We Rise Up 4 Kids do to help kids who are being bullied or have experienced other trauma?
We help provide payment for therapy and work with therapists on how to help. We have different games and activities for kids to play to help keep their minds off of things. We want to show them that while the trauma may not go away, they can still have fun.
What were some of the challenges of distance learning this spring?
There were a lot of different aspects that were hard. Sometimes, it can be difficult to do school work when you aren’t in school. If I’m not in a structured place, I’m tempted to take a little time to chill out, but that short break can turn into not such a little while. It’s also hard not seeing your friends. I had just become a student at Wilson, so it was difficult to establish relationships because we were distance learning. I didn’t have a way to connect with other students.
How has it been being back on campus?
It’s very different. Wearing a mask all the time is hard, but I know it’s helpful. Social distancing also is a challenge. You want to be right next to people and give them a hug or high five, but you can’t.
What is your favorite subject in school?
Definitely language arts. I enjoy reading and writing. I love books and how I can really get into a story.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I like to hang out with my friends, which right now means Zoom calls. I have a cat named Alice, and I also really like to play with her. I love community service and helping other people. That’s one of the reasons I wanted to start We Rise Up 4 Kids.