Whether it’s rose, bubble gum or flamingo, the power of pink is once again on display.
Today (Wednesday, Feb. 26) marks Pink Shirt Day, a date when each year Canadians are asked to take a stand against bullying – and to make that stance public by including an article of pink clothing in their ensemble.
Each February, the national movement sees thousands of Canadians wear pink to show their support for safe and inclusive schools, workplaces and communities, according to a release from London Drugs, the campaign’s retail sponsor. This year’s theme, “Lift Each Other Up” reflects the origins of Pink Shirt Day, which began in Eastern Canada 13 years ago.
In 2007, two Nova Scotia students took action after witnessing a younger student being bullied for wearing a pink shirt to school. The students bought 50 pink T-shirts and encouraged schoolmates to wear them and send a powerful message of solidarity to the bully.
Since 2008, through the sale of the shirts, $1.5 million has been raised for a number of anti-bully programs, including Kids Help Phone, KidSafe Project and Boys and Girls Clubs of Western Canada.
According to pinkshirtday.ca, one in five kids is affected by bullying and last year, more than 59,000 youth were impacted by Pink Shirt Day-funded programs.
“We want to encourage every Western Canadian to share the positive message of Pink Shirt Day this year,” said Clint Mahlman, London Drugs president and COO.
This year’s T-shirts, which feature a rocket ship blasting off and the phrase “Lift Each Other Up,” are now available at all London Drugs locations across Western Canada in youth or adult sizes.
Net proceeds are distributed through CKNW Kids’ Fund to support youth anti-bullying programs across B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Sales from shirts are donated to community programs in each provincial market for community programs that include anti-bullying initiatives.
Check out last year’s Pink Shirt Day event at the B.C. Legislature: