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[Interview] Bella Thorne 'Shakes it Up' With Philanthropy

Bella Thorne knows how to “Shake It Up” and I'm not just talking her Disney show! Cheesy joke, I KNOW. Seriously though, besides her acting and singing career, the teen starlet is also a first-class philanthropist.

The 14-year-old is a spokesperson for the Staples for Students campaign, which encourages students to collect school supplies for impoverished students who need 'em, and a Global Ambassador for Stomp Out Bullying. Plus her own dealings with dyslexia have gotten her super set to help people who might have reading disabilities.

Bella’s all over the place with her good deeds. And did I mention that she talked about her dyslexia in the Emmy-nominated Disney special "The Time I...Found Out I Had Dyslexia"? In order to keep up with all the great stuff she’s got going on, we caught up with her.

ACT: Orlando Bloom, Albert Einstein, and Tom Cruise are just a few among the world's creative dyslexic minds. And you're SO up there, girl! How have you worked around your dyslexia to pursue your dreams?

BELLA: I practice reading all the time. I read everything and having so many scripts to read which really helps out as well. I have a great on set teacher and we work really hard on my reading skills. I've gotten more confident in my reading, which helps on a daily basis. I just kept the thought "Never, ever give up" in my mind and I didn't let my fear of reading publicly stop me!

ACT: What do you think young people living with dyslexia should know?

BELLA: I think they should know that although reading can be tough and some dreams seem impossible to pursue, don't give up...it's tougher, but not impossible. Once you feel your dreams coming true, you will realize that having dyslexia just made the ride even more rewarding.

ACT: As ambassador for "Stomp Out Bullying," I'm sure you've met a ton of bullying victims and can speak from experience. What words of encouragement do you offer them?

BELLA: Yes, I have suffered from bullying in many ways, from bullying in school due to my disability in reading, to digital abuse that I deal with on a daily basis. I'd like to tell the kids that are being bullied that no one should have to deal with the abuse, EVER! Unfortunately, we live in a world where some people can be so cruel. I like to keep in my mind that the people bullying you don't have a problem with you...they have a problem with themselves. Don't let anyone's opinion of you define YOU. You are who you want to be. If it gets too difficult, speak to a parent or authority. You don't have to suffer.

ACT: How did you get involved with the Staples for Students campaign? Why is this cause important to you?

BELLA: Well, I got involved through Do Something and I have been working with them on a smaller scale and thought this would be something grander that could reach far more people. It was an exciting opportunity to "do something" that could help millions of kids that are going back to school without the proper supplies. Also, when my father passed, things were difficult financially for my family and I know how that stress can affect someone with their daily life and studies.

ACT: How do you have time to give back and act?!?! Do you sleep?

BELLA: I find ways that I can give back and work in to my schedule. I hope to become even more involved when the show goes on season 3 hiatus. I am so blessed; how can I not help others? It would be a sin not to.

ACT: Back To School is almost here. Any tips on getting back into the groove of things?

BELLA: Start going to bed earlier! It is a tough adjustment when you have had a summer of staying up late and waking up late. I think having your supplies packed up and ready to go the night before you start school is a great help, too!

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