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Pink Shirt Day – How Giving at School is Your Anti-Bullying Campaign

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Pink Shirt Day has become a well known event around the world that highlights bullying in schools.  The Pink Shirt Day Event, held this year on February 27, 2019, shows the world that people do care about and will continue to stop bullying in our schools, workplaces and neighbourhoods. Their focus this year is on cyber bullying. Bullying is NEVER ok. That is the strong message being spread on pink shirt day. Online bullying is really not okay, so take a stand.

Pink Shirt Day was originally inspired by an act of kindness in a small Canadian town in Nova Scotia. To read more about the actual incident that started the pink shirt movement, check it out here! What an amazing story it is! You will love it. As a fellow Canadian I am proud to see that Pink Shirt Day started in our country and continues to spread around the globe. Like our program at 365give, it goes to show how one simple gesture, one small act of kindness can make the world a better place. The ripple effect of giving just keeps on moving forward! We need more giving acts like this in the world. The gift of giving doesn’t take a lot and makes a world of difference as we can see from the Pink Shirt Day campaign!

But Pink Shirt Day is just one incredible way of making our world a better place and stop bullying in our schools. Participate in The Pink Shirt Day Event on February 27th but don’t stop there! There are many other ways to give back throughout the year that support anti-bullying behaviours.  Add these gives to your weekly giving list to stop bullying!

6 Gives That Support Pink Shirt Day and Anti Bullying

  • Create a school bulletin. Share at your school and other neighbouring schools. Promote ways students, parents and teachers can have a safe and supportive school free of bullying. Share stories of how schools are dealing with bullying and list daily giving ideas that promote an anti-bullying culture. Awareness is the first step, so start creating!
  • Make a ‘Take a Stand Together’ paper chain. This is a great idea for classrooms. Give students strips of brightly coloured paper and ask them to write their own anti-bullying message on it. Glue or staple each strip of paper into a ‘link’ to create a powerful visual representation of your class’ stand against bullying. This is powerful and impactful both at the school and for parents and staff. Anti-bullying messages start with students!
  • Speak Up! If you see someone being bullied, speak up. Offer support to the victim once the bully walks away. I have a personal story about this. It was quite a few years ago when I was in elementary school, but I had a friend who was constantly being bullied by the “jocks” at the school, or so they thought they were special! They would constantly call her names and make fun of her and tell her to do things that were completely and utterly pathetic. Whenever I witnessed this type of behavior, I would speak up and stick up for her. I would tell the bullies to leave her alone and one time in math class (I remember it like it was today), one of the bullies was sitting in front of my friend and I. He turned around and started mocking her and making fun of her.  I asked him why he needed to act that way towards her and what point he was trying to make other than the fact that he was making himself look like a real loser. I told him to leave her alone, turn around and pay attention in class instead of bullying my friend. She was doing nothing to enable him to make fun of her and mock her. He just thought he looked cool in front of his buddies. But once I made the comment, he didn’t look so cool anymore. We need to stick up for each other. We need to show that we care. We need to say that the actions of a bully are not okay. It’s so important and I’m constantly teaching my boys to look out for their friends and help those in need.
  • Buddy Bench – There are a lot of schools that have a buddy or friendship bench. I think these are awesome. Check out this wonderful news story. These benches are placed on school playgrounds so that children who have few friends can make new friends. If there is a child sitting on the bench, another student can go over and invite that child to play with them. The Recess Duty Teacher can also instigate new friendships when a child is sitting on the buddy bench. I think this is amazing and I’m sure very effective. What a sweet way to have every child included and no one excluded from having friends.
  • Be Inclusive with Birthday Invitations or Valentine’s Day Card Giving – Remember everyone in your class when sharing invites or cards. If this is overwhelming for a parent, ask other parents to the party to help supervise. Make sure that everyone in the classroom receives the same thing. You don’t want to exclude a few children from receiving a card or treats. Everyone should be a part of the receiving. You wouldn’t like your child to be excluded so please ensure that it doesn’t happen to other children.
  • Be Friends with everyone in your class! So many of us could learn from this message. My son has a child with special needs in his classroom. They are good friends and have been since kindergarten.  Teachers and classmates have made a point to be inclusive to ensure there is no isolation of a student who is challenged. The kids find ways to change activities to make sure this special needs student is not left out. I love the integration of students or varying abilities and think it’s the most amazing move that the school board could have done. In many schools special needs students are put in special classrooms so as not to hinder the other students. Integration of students in classrooms creates a healthy culture of understanding, creativity and friendship. I remember when I was in school, special needs students would always be “taken away” to another class to learn. Everyone learns differently and they should not be centred out. Everyone deserves to be treated equally and not made to feel less than.

 

There are so many ways to give at school that promotes a safe environment free from bullying! Bullying is just not acceptable so lets start creating more daily gives that promote a bully free culture starting with our schools. The fact that it still happens in this day and age is hard to believe, but it does. if we create bully free environments at a young age, workplaces, public spaces and community centers will also adopt this culture. Bullying needs to stop and it needs to stop NOW. I have told my children that I never want to get a call that they are bullying another child or that my children are being bullied. Lets stop it today! Make your daily give by pledging to stop bullying in your community. Take your pledge against bullying here!

Sign up for your free membership at 365give and add this daily give as your very first. All it takes is one give, one day at a time to make the world a happier place. Ready?

Patty Aldrich
Patty Aldrich
My name is Patty Aldrich, a mother of two boys, a pet parent to two miniature pinchers and a wife with full-time employment. I truly believe we are responsible to create the change we want to see in the world through our daily interaction with people, the planet and animals. 365give is near and dear to my heart. I volunteer with them to share simple giving ideas that create change in the world, one day, one give at a time. I have witnessed the power of giving with my family and within my work. Sharing these stories with you is what I love to do! So what are you waiting for? Get out there and be the change you want to see in the world!" Check out my Facebook Page at Happiness For All

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