To mark the occasion this year, local volunteers have organized a “Pink Parade” that will see participants march down Centre Street on April 9th to show their solidarity in the fight against bullying. Anyone interested in taking part in the parade can gather at the Shaunavon High School parking lot at about 11:15 a.m. on April 9. The parade should start at approximately 11:30 a.m. Local residents are invited to walk in the parade or wear pink that day to show their support for the cause. “We appreciate any support we can get,” said Shelly Rhodes, a member of the Shaunavon High School Community Council. “The whole idea of the event is for awareness and prevention about bullying issues in the community.” The parade will be led by members of the Shaunavon RCMP who will be dressed in their Red Serge. The event will conclude with a community luncheon barbecue at the Crescent Point Wickenheiser Centre. Lunch is being provided by the Shaunavon Co-op and will include hot dogs, cake and juice. Even if people are unable to take part in the parade, they are still invited to come out for the barbecue lunch. All three Shaunavon schools will be taking part in the event. Seven local businesses have also indicated that they will be participating in the Red Cross Day of Pink in one form or another. Individuals and businesses can register for the event with local Red Cross representative Dwinell Stevenson by phoning 306-297-3158. Dwinell also has official Red Cross Day of Pink t-shirts, hats and stickers to purchase. However, people do not have to purchase Red Cross apparel if they don’t want to, but everyone is encouraged to wear at least one pink item of clothing that day. The entire event is being organized and sponsored by the School Community Councils at Christ the King School, Public School and High School as well as the Shaunavon RCMP, Shaunavon Co-op, Canadian Red Cross and Town of Shaunavon. The parade is being organized in the wake of a well-attended anti-bullying meeting in Shaunavon last November. Organizers at that gathering made a commitment to remain active in the fight against bullying. Wearing pink as a symbol of the cause can be traced back to an incident at a Nova Scotia school in 2007 when a grade 9 student arrived wearing a pink shirt and was bullied because of it. Two Grade 12 students – David Shepherd and Travis Price – heard the news and decided to take action. They went to a nearby store and bought 50 pink shirts, including tank tops, to wear to school the next day. Not only were dozens of students outfitted with the discount t-shirts, but hundreds of students also showed up wearing their own pink clothes, some head-to-toe. The Canadian Red Cross believes that every child should be treated with respect and that means taking a stand against bullying every day. The Day of Pink is a day to celebrate, respect and to encourage others to join the movement.
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