People and Places
29/05/2019
Let’s blossom together By Kate Sears

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The Blossom Program does just as it sounds — it’s a program and published book designed to empower and build resilience in young people in order to help them blossom. Hayley Roper has designed the program to be centred around bullying and social media, and it consists of 15 other modules that cover the typical issues that young people are facing today — from peer pressure to self-esteem and body image.

It was a challenging process for the Mornington Peninsula resident to write. Yet this second published book of Hayley’s was a non-negotiable venture as she herself encountered difficult times during high school. Her early high school years saw her suffering from low self-esteem, which unfortunately made her an easy target for bullying. 

“I could never understand why people were so nasty to each other, so I decided to find out,” Hayley said. “Lots of time, research and a whole lot of heart has gone into developing the program.” 

The 17 modules have a worksheet at the end of each module, and took her an impressive three and a half years to write. However, she feels it was a lifetime in the making. Hayley paused the writing process to complete a Certificate in Adolescent Counselling at Monash University. As a health professional, she believes that this book is why she’s here. 

“My goal and passion in life is to shut down bullying in all forms. I believe that if I can help young people to be happy with who they are, they will not feel the need to bring each other down. I want to make the school ground a friendly place for all young people.” 

In one way, Hayley feels that she has written the program for her 13-year-old self. It’s been a chance to share the wisdom that she has now that she wishes she had back then. Simply put, she never wants a young person to feel the way she felt during her high school years. During the writing process, she’s always said that if she can help just one person with her program then it will all be worth it for her. 

“One of my first readers was a 13-year-old girl and the program helped her very much. In that moment, the time and effort that went into developing the program was worth it for me.” 

Continually striving towards making a change, Hayley speaks at many events and workshops aimed at empowering young people and adults, including a recent event at Lululemon for International Women’s Day, and ultimately aims to have her book distributed throughout book stores — it’s currently available only via www.theblossomprogram.com

Hayley’s goal is to implement and teach the Blossom Program in schools. “I just really want to make a difference.”

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