Ethan Baerg, Chanel Born, and Jackson Van’tHullenaar from Mrs. Funk’s Grade 4/5 class at Yennadon Elementary in Maple Ridge made thank-you cards for local first responders. (Lisa Lawrance/Special to THE NEWS)

Maple Ridge kids share kindness all month in lead up to Pink Shirt Day

Annual anti-bullying campaign will be held Feb. 26

Many will begin next week with the colour pink in mind, but one community in Maple Ridge has been thinking pink since the start of the month.

Yennadon Elementary has a character theme the school focuses on each month, explained Lisa Lawrance, school principal – and this month the theme is kindness.

READ MORE: Win a puppy party for the BC SPCA’s Treat Week

“Leading up to Pink Shirt Day (Feb. 26) we’ve been doing a bunch of things to show our kindness,” she said.

Since the start of the month, Lawrance has begun the day by suggesting ways the school community can be kind during her morning announcements.

“We are really honing in on the saying, ‘If you can be anything in this world be kind,’” she added.

Students have been spreading kindness all month long through activities organized by their teachers.

Candace White, teacher librarian, organized a Basics for Babies fundraiser in support of Sonia’s Cradle at The Salvation Army Ridge Meadows Ministries.

“We’ve done older kids in the past and we haven’t done babies for years, so we decided to do that,” she explained.

Megan Kossaber-Graham’s Grade 6/7 class made Valentine’s to share with seniors in Maple Ridge.

“She asked other classes to help participate, so 16 classes in our school made handmade cards as a way to spread kindness and joy to the seniors,” White explained. “They made, altogether, over 350 cards for our local senior centres and manors.”

Greystone Manor, a retirement home, shared photos on their Facebook page of the seniors receiving their cards on Valentine’s Day.

READ MORE: Sharing hugs and happiness in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows

Christy Funk’s Grade 4/5 class made thank-you cards to share their gratitude with first responders in the community.

“The teacher talked to the students about how it’s always the unsung heroes who need our acknowledgement and support throughout the entire year,” White said.

But what the students look forward to most is Pink Shirt Day, said White.

On Pink Shirt Day (Wednesday) students will meet at the front of the school in the morning instead of lining up outside their classroom.

“We do a high-five morning on our Pink Shirt Day,” said White. “They come in the front doors and the leadership kids, plus two of the classes, and all of the staff, all high-five the kids and we have a big greeting in the morning.”

The local RCMP school liaison is also invited to greet the kids.

“It’s just a lovely way to start the day, and to start Pink Shirt Day off in a loving, kind, caring community that we have here,” said White.

This year’s Pink Shirt Day theme is “Lift each other up.”


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