HAMPTON, Va. — It takes a big effort to help others in the community, and that's what Shant'a Miller White has made her mission over the past 10 years.
A mother of three in Hampton, she said she'll never forget the day in 2012 her 11-year-old daughter was attacked on the school bus by a 14-year-old bully.
Instead of holding onto the anger, White decided there was something more she could do. She founded the nonprofit organization Parents Against Bullying Virginia to empower and educate families and communities.
Through workshops, mentoring sessions, school visits and other events, White and her team of volunteers are committed to spreading awareness of and putting an end to bullying.
"Back in 2012, we really didn't have a whole lot of people talking about bullying and resources in that nature, so I started having resource events and pulling events for resources for people, just to let people know it's okay to speak out," White said.
13News Now wanted to shine a light on White's organization and her efforts throughout the Hampton Roads community. With the help of our parent company, TEGNA, we gave White $6,500 to help give her organization a little boost.
"It's been so hard. People see what you're doing and think it's easy, but they don't know the back stories of trying to make it happen," said White. "Thank you, thank you TEGNA Foundation. Thank you so much."
White says she struggled during the pandemic to keep her organization going strong.
She said because she relies on public gatherings and events to get volunteers in and to promote donations, she had to work extra hard to keep her organization and her message against bullying afloat.
It's a small gesture for a big effort to help others in Hampton Roads.
"You're going to see exactly what we're going to do this," said White. "We're going to cover even more land, more children, more hearts and we're going to keep encouraging those stars. We want everyone to know they're a star, successful and smart, terrific and talented, and refuse to be bullied and put down."
White says she plans to use the money for programs like her Star Bright Kidz educational program for young children, including children with special needs, which promotes positivity at a young age.