Over 600 students, teachers, and staff swarmed downtown in pink, dancing to Canadian artist Shawn Mendes’ song “Believe” for the nation-wide annual campaign against bullying on Feb. 24.
First gathering at W. L. McLeod Elementary, then marching down Burrard Avenue at noon, the student procession was led by Principal Libby Hart of W. L. McLeod Elementary, Sgt. Svend Nielsen from the Vanderhoof RCMP, Mayor Gerry Thiessen of Vanderhoof, and Superintendent Charlene Seguin from Nechako Lakes school district.
Community members of all ages (below) and agencies, including the Nechako Valley Community Services (bottom left) dressed in pink to support anti-bullying.
Along with speeches by community leaders at the event, Nechako Valley Secondary student Liam Moore also spoke at the event.
“I believe in the power of equality,” Moore said. “I’ve got my unique style, staying true to myself…it’s a shame people can’t, or won’t, stand up.”
He thinks that self-expression is what younger students need to focus on to fight bullying.
“Love who you are,” he said. “Everyone is unique.”