Wilmer Valderrama (WireImage)For Venezuelan actor Wilmer Valderrama, known for getting laughs as foreign exchange student Fez on "That 70's Show", his adolescent years weren't always a laughing matter.
Like many Hispanics, US-born Valderrama struggled to assimilate as a teenager in this country balancing both Latin and American cultures. The actor considers his struggle similar to that of today's children facing bullying. "When I came to this country I didn't speak English. Fourteen is a really hard age not to be able to communicate smoothly…I was looked at as inferior and dumb, as someone who didn't really count, and that really hurt," says Valderrama. Understanding what life is like when you're made fun of and badgered just for being different, Valderrama has joined forces with candy-maker WONKA to promote the "NERDS® Unite!" anti-bullying campaign.
In a new video announcement for the campaign, Valderrama, along with fellow Latina actress Francia Raisa Almendarez, confesses why he's a nerd. Check it out:
WONKA will make a $25,000 donation to STOMP Out Bullying, one of the foremost anti-bullying organizations in the US, if at least 10,000 people join the Nerds Unite! movement by the end of 2012. "It's a tough, new world out there for young people dealing with bullying these days," says Valderrama. "With the Internet and other means of bullying, the NERDS Unite! campaign is as important as ever to remind everyone…that being different is actually great and totally normal. We all have something we're passionate or nerdy about."
The maker of the NERDS candy believes we can "STOMP Out Bullying" by being tolerant, kind and respectful, and standing up for each other. To join, log in onto Facebook.com/Wonka. Once you join, share what you are "a NERD for," and watch the movement grow.