Think pink and walk against bullies

A town march on Pink Shirt Day brought the mayor and RCMP commander.

Svend Nielsen with Vanderhoof RCMP

Svend Nielsen with Vanderhoof RCMP

Pink hats, pink shirts and pink banners were seen in droves Wednesday as Vanderhoof students stood up against bullies.

A march on Feb. 25 at 2 p.m. from W.L. McLeod followed the rest of the country as people everywhere wore pink for international Pink Shirt Day. The walk was led by Vanderhoof’s mayor Gerry Thiessen, RCMP commander Svend Nielsen and Owen Kadonaga, 7.

“Anti-bullying day reminds people bullies are bad and it’s not ok to bully,” Owen said, as he raised his anti-bullying sign high.

A collaborative effort from three Vanderhoof schools saw hundreds of students and teachers out in their pinkest attire as they walked the downtown core. Many kids held hand-made posters or crafts that told onlookers how they feel towards bullying.

“[This march] is an outward sign that this is a community that includes everyone in each activity we do and everyone has the freedom to be involved in those activities,” Thiessen said.

Libby Hart, Principal of W.L. McLeod, helped organize the walk and thanked everyone for the great turnout.

“The staff and students of W.L. McLeod Elementary School would like to thank everyone who marched down the streets of Vanderhoof proudly displaying their pink support for anti-bullying day.  Our partners included Evelyn Dickson and Sinkutview Elementary Schools as well as a host of community agencies; the RCMP, the Fire Department, Mayor Thiessen and Kevin Moutray from town council, Ministry for Children and Families, our McLeod PAC and others. The show of support, the joining of schools to walk as one, and the effort made by the community to take time and walk together, children and adults, was an amazing tribute to the strength of our town. Thank you one and all for saying we will not tolerate bullying in this town. Look out next year,” Hart said.