Pink flooded Kelowna’s Laurel Packinghouse for the sixth annual Pink Shirt Day breakfast hosted by the Okanagan Boys and Girls Clubs on Feb. 26.
Pink Shirt Day started 13 years ago in Nova Scotia when David Shepherd and Travis Price noticed a fellow student being bullied for wearing pink. The campaign’s theme for this year is “Lift Each Other Up.”
It has since grown and is celebrated throughout Canada and internationally.
Okanagan Boys and Girls Clubs CEO Diane Entwistle said the Pink Shirt Day breakfast is a great opportunity to bring the community together to talk about kindness.
“In the past, we’ve talked about how this is an anti-bullying day but over the years, our message has change to be one that’s more positive,” she said.
“Because the best antidote to bullying is actually kindness and compassion, empathy and lifting each other up as opposed to tearing each other down.”
Students Emma Pollard and Katie Carter talked about what the day meant to them.
“It’s making sure that everyone knows that we care about them and that they’re welcome in every friend group,” Carter said.
“To me, it’s showing kindness towards others and making everyone feel included so nobody’s left out,” Pollard said.
Addison Kotak and Isabel Ruehle said the day is a reminder to help stop bullying.
“It means reaching out to those who are being bullied and not (just) talking to them, but letting them know you’re there for them and having that comfort for them,” Kotak said.
“This day just helps those who are having a hard time so their emotions can get out there and they can reach out for help,” Ruehle said.