Partners with Organization Helping Schools Become Safer, More Connected
Tampa, FL, Feb 21, 2017 – The organization that honors Rachel Joy Scott, the first person killed in the Columbine High School shooting, is partnering with Miss America’s Outstanding Teen (MAOTeen) to promote kindness, hope and a positive climate in K-12 schools.
“We are thrilled about our partnership with Miss America’s Outstanding Teen,” said Rob Unger, CEO of Rachel’s Challenge, the non-profit organization founded in Rachel’s name to encourage kindness in schools. “This is a movement to shine light on Rachel’s story and most importantly the power of reaching out and being kind to those around you.”
In this newly released video
produced by Rachel’s Challenge, reigning Miss America’s Outstanding Teen Nicole Jia reveals her story of exclusion and isolation bullying, including on social media, when she switched schools during her freshman year. She shared the emotional story with teens from the Chickasaw Nation Chickasha Pehlichi Ikbi Youth Leadership Program in Ada, Oklahoma during a kickoff event with Rachel’s Challenge.
“I am incredibly inspired by Rachel, who dedicated herself to being kind and accepting of other students at Columbine High School before the tragic events that took her life,” says Jia. “160,000 students skip school every day for fear of being bullied. Working together, we can help to create supportive communities both in schools and online that are united for kindness, acceptance and inclusion.”
Since being named MAOTeen in August, Jia has worked to increase awareness that ignoring or isolating peers is a silent form of bullying. She is leading MAOTeen’s #BeSelfless campaign, which challenges kids to post fewer selfies and share more selfless acts of kindness and authenticity on social media. The #BeSelfless campaign has built momentum over the past year through partnerships with anti-bullying organizations, teen therapists and social media responsibility advocates.