Bullying is a major problem in our schools, workplaces, homes, and online.
According to pinkshirtday.ca, over the month of February, and throughout the year, CKNW Kids’ Fund’s Pink Shirt Day aims to raise awareness of these issues, as well as raise funds to support programs that foster children’s healthy self-esteem.
Now a movement celebrated across the globe, Pink Shirt Day has humble beginnings.
Inspired by an act of kindness in small-town Nova Scotia, CKNW Kids’ Fund, working with partners Boys & Girls Clubs and 980 CKNW, was inspired to raise funds to support anti-bullying programs.
“David Shepherd, Travis Price and their teenage friends organized a high-school protest to wear pink in sympathy with a Grade 9 boy who was being bullied (for wearing a pink shirt)…(They) took a stand against bullying when they protested against the harassment of a new Grade 9 student by distributing pink T-shirts to all the boys in their school,” reported the Globe & Mail.
“I learned that two people can come up with an idea, run with it, and it can do wonders,’ says Mr. Price, 17, who organized the pink protest.
“Finally, someone stood up for a weaker kid.”
So Mr. Shepherd and some others headed off to a discount store and bought 50 pink tank tops. They sent out message to schoolmates that night, and the next morning they hauled the shirts to school in a plastic bag. As they stood in the foyer handing out the shirts, the bullied boy walked in. His face spoke volumes, according to the article.
“It looked like a huge weight was lifted off his shoulders,” Mr. Price recalled. “The bullies were never heard from again.”
After David and Travis’ act of kindness in 2007, CKNW was inspired to help other youth affected by bullying, with many staff members wearing pink shirts and collecting funds to support Boys and Girls Clubs.
Bullying comes in many forms. Essentially, it is described as a form of aggression where there is a power imbalance; the person doing the bullying has power over the person being victimized.
In additional to any physical trauma incurred, bullying can result in serious emotional problems, including anxiety, low self-esteem, or depression.
There are several types of bullying:
– physical bullying: using physical force or aggression against another person (e.g., hitting).
– verbal bullying: using words to verbally attack someone (e.g., name-calling)
– social/relational bullying: trying to hurt someone through excluding them, spreading rumours or ignoring them (e.g., gossiping)
– cyberbullying: using electronic media to threaten, embarrass, intimidate, or exclude someone, or to damage their reputation (e.g., sending threatening text messages).
According to pinkshirtday.ca, countries across the globe are now organizing anti-bullying fundraisers of their own, including Japan, New Zealand, China, Panama, and numerous others.
In fact, last year alone, people in almost 180 countries shared their support of Pink Shirt Day through social media posts and donations.
On Feb. 26th, we encourage everyone to practice kindness and wear pink to symbolize that you do not tolerate bullying.
As the Pink Shirt Day movement grows each year, we not only see more and more people practicing kindness – both online and off – we are pleased to use the funds raised through official merchandise sales and donations to help hundreds of kids affected by bullying, notes the web site.
Since 2008, net proceeds of over $2.3 million have been distributed to support youth anti-bullying programs in British Columbia and throughout western Canada.
In 2019 alone, we were able to support programs that impacted more than 59,000 youth and children.