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Shane Koyczan's 'To This Day,' Anti-Bullying Poem, Goes Viral (VIDEO)

02/25/2013 03:07 pm ET | Updated Feb 25, 2013

If you have time to watch only one video today, it should probably be this one.

After being posted to YouTube on Feb. 19, animated spoken-word poem "To This Day," by Canadian poet Shane Koyczan, has spread like wildfire online.

Viewed more than 4.3 million times (and counting), the soul-expanding video tells the stories of bullied children and focuses not only on the trauma of isolated youth and the battle to overcome emotional scars, but also on the hope of a better tomorrow.

The video also features gorgeous artwork by several talented contributors, whom Koyczan credits at the end of the clip.

Slate called the video "beautiful," Yahoo! News dubbed it "powerful" and Mashable promised that it will "reshape your views on name calling, harassment and pain."

Koyczan told cable new channel HLNTV's Kyra Phillips that the response to his anti-bullying poem has astounded him, adding that many bullied kids and their parents have reached out to him since the video's launch to share their stories.

The poet, who has also launched a "To This Day" anti-bullying project, explained on the project's website that his own experiences with bullying as a youngster inspired him to want to confront and raise awareness about this widespread problem.

"My experiences with violence in schools still echo throughout my life but standing to face the problem has helped me in immeasurable ways," he said on the site.

According to DoSomething.org, "over 3.2 million students are victims of bullying each year." Additionally, one in seven students in grades K-12 is said to be involved in bullying -- whether as a bully or a bullying victim.

Just this month, Reuters reported on a new study revealing that the psychological effects that impact children who are bullied or who act as bullies can often last into adulthood. Moreover, children involved in bullying were found to be more susceptible to psychiatric conditions than their peers.

Bullies or bullied kids are at a "higher risk for depression, anxiety and panic disorder years down the line," the Feb. 20 study also said.

What do you think of Koyczan's video? Tell us in the comments below.

(Hat tip, Upworthy)

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