Never in his wildest dreams did Gabriel L. Silva, a preteen chess-playing, video-gaming, middle-schooler, think that at this young age he would be building an impressive resume of acting credits, signed with two amazing agents, one in Houston, the other in LA, all as a result of taking the negative of being bullied and turning it into a positive.
“I was a victim of repeated bullying. I am small for my age and kids would make fun of me for my size. Eventually, the verbal turned to physical. I know that not everyone is going to like me, and I am actually okay with that,” comments Silva. “But disliking and mistreating someone physically, verbally, or emotionally for basically being different and not taking the opportunity to get to know them for who they are, is not okay.”
One out of four students are victims of bullying. One out of five students actually admits to being bullies themselves. Effects on children that either are the bully or that are being bullied go well beyond the school day and sometimes can last a lifetime. Students who are bullied unfortunately sometimes resort to suicide and the bullies often find themselves incarcerated by the time that they are adults.
To give back in a positive way in hopes of helping to break this cycle, Silva has taken on the task of becoming a budding entrepreneur, taking action against the social injustices of bullying with his new clothing line, Take Action Apparel & Gear, where he donates a percentage of the proceeds to the Jump with Jahkiyla Foundation and the Allergy & Asthma Foundation of America.
“I sort of got a double whammy−I’m not only small but I also have life-threatening allergies/asthma as well. I have to take meds with me everywhere I go, just in case. But, I’m no different than any other kid. I am just normal with a twist. I started Take Action Apparel & Gear to take a stance and bring attention to this problem. Bullying does not discriminate and ultimately affects us all. Together, we can end it. Together, we are responsible for our future.”
During the month of October, which is National Bullying Prevention Month, Silva has been speaking to students in the Houston area, telling his story and challenging them to take action against this nation-wide epidemic.
Aside from acting and modeling, Gabriel is pursuing his first degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do with Grand Master Mark Giambi. He also enjoys playing chess, video games, listening to music, watching TV and movies, playing with his toy poodle, Charlie, and spending as much time with friends and family as he can.
To follow the journey this rising star, check out his website, with links to all of his social media and his IMDb database as well. We cannot wait to see what’s next for this young man!