Many of us know the feeling of sitting alone in a cafeteria during school lunch time – including 16-year-old Natalie Hampton.

When she first started high school, the teen was constantly ostracized and rejected when she was trying to find a place to sit during the lunch period.

By the time she made friends and settled in at her school in Sherman Oaks, California, she couldn’t help but think about all the other kids suffering in silence the same way that she had.

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That’s why she created Sit With Us – an innovative app that allows children to coordinate safe places to eat and make new friends.

Since the planning takes place in a privatized chat channel rather than in public, teens don’t have to worry about possibly being embarrassed during their search for belonging. Kids can host open lunches as “ambassadors for a Sit With Us club” and get the party started.

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“Because the way it was at my old school, I tried many times to reach out to someone, but I was rejected on many times,” Natalie told NPR. “And you feel like you’re labeling yourself as an outcast when you ask to join a table with someone you don’t know. This way it’s very private. It’s through the phone. No one else has to know. And you know that you’re not going to be rejected once you get to the table.”

Since the app was launched on September 9th, Natalie has received an outpouring of gratitude and positive feedback –it is also free to download on The Apple Store.

Don’t Forget About The Friends You Already Have: Click To Spread The Good NewsPhoto by Carolyn Hampton

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