Tennis star Madison Keys sponsors anti-bullying talk

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ROCK ISLAND, Ill. (KWQC) – Madison Keys is a partner with FearlesslyGiRL, a girls empowerment organization. At Rock Island High School today, she began the first of six visits to high schools across the country to spread a positive message to young women.

A main focus of the organization is ending cyberbullying, something Keys has personal experience with.

“There’s been some tough losses and I come off of a court and turn on my phone and have a lot of nasty comments,” she says. “Even sometimes after wins, people are mad that I beat their player.”

Dealing with all the negativity on social media frustrated Keys. She decided to find a way to try and put a stop to it.

“I felt like if I kept staying quiet and not doing what I could to fix it, then I would be really disappointed in myself,” Keys says.

She found the group online and reached out to the founder Kate Whitfield. From the start, Whitfield knew Keys was passionate about making a difference.

“She was wanting to not just lend her name to something but like build something together,” Whitfield says. “[She] genuinely believes in it.”

Rock Island students Man Lun and Amber Formholtz appreciate her message.

“She’s a great person. I think she’s a great role model, she encourages to be their best and not be afraid to be themselves,” says Formholtz.

“I learned a lot about how you shouldn’t be insecure about yourself and how you should love yourself,” adds Lun.

This is only the beginning of Keys sharing her experience with young girls and she believes every little bit matters.

“You know it just seems like if we can try to stop things like that from happening in small areas, in high schools and things like that, then that could really make an impact with the rest of the country, the rest of the world and hopefully make social media a better place to be.”

 

 

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