The Valentine roses have wilted, but the love and kindness generated by Pink Shirt Day on February 24th can last all year. Learn how two teenage boys started this anti-bullying movement, and how you can show your support.
Wednesday, February 24, 2016, is Pink Shirt Day. It all began in 2007 when a grade 9 student in Nova Scotia was bullied for wearing a pink shirt on his first day of school. Two grade 12 students, David Shepherd and Travis Price, decided to stand up to the bullies.
Sea of pink
The two boys bought 50 pink shirts and emailed students to encourage them to wear pink to school the next day. As well as the 50 pink shirt-wearing students, many showed up dressed in their own pink clothes, some dressed in pink from head to toe. And according to the boys, the young man who had been bullied “looked like a huge weight was lifted off his shoulders.”
Little did the boys know that they had begun an anti-bullying movement that would turn into Pink Shirt Day. BC Premier Christy Clark was instrumental in promoting Pink Shirt Day when she worked as a radio host at CKNW in Vancouver. Proceeds from the sale of pink shirts now go to support anti-bullying programs, and it’s become an international phenomenon.
What are the effects of bullying?
Children (and adults) who are bullied deal with a variety of issues, including
• low self-esteem
• loneliness and isolation
• social withdrawal
• lower academic outcomes
• higher risk of substance abuse
A wave of kindness
This year’s theme is Kindness is One Size Fits All. We can all spread kindness one simple act at a time—all year long. After all, kindness never goes out of style.
So, what colour will you be wearing on the 24th?