Organizations, schools, youth advocacy groups and businesses throughout Rocky View County (RVC) will be awash in pink Feb. 27 during the 13th annual Pink Shirt Day – an annual, nationwide movement to promote anti-bullying and bullying awareness. According to Nola Hume, the youth and volunteer program co-ordinator with the Boys and Girls Club of Cochrane and Area, the club’s youth workers will be at schools in Cochrane throughout the day, wearing pink shirts and spreading the message about anti-bullying. As well, Hume added, club members will be visiting Bow Valley High School during the school’s lunch hour Feb. 27. “They’ll have some stuff set up in their learning commons, so we’ll be set up there with some resources and different things to advertise what we’re all about to the kids who go to that school,” she said. In the southeast corner of RVC, the Synergy Youth and Community Development Society’s YELL Youth Council will be busy conducting its annual Pretty in Pink (PiP) campaign throughout February. As part of the yearly campaign, council members create and sell buttons – bearing anti-bullying messages – to businesses and groups in Chestermere, Langdon and surrounding rural areas. People can wear the buttons to show their support of Pink Shirt Day, if they do not have a pink shirt in their wardrobe. Rody Visotski, the chair of the YELL Youth Council, said events like Pink Shirt Day and the PiP campaign help get the message out about bullying prevention. “Especially in small and isolated communities like ours, awareness is something we don’t easily come into contact with,” he said. “Even with technology and everything we have in our modern world, neighbor to neighbor, it’s not something that’s talked about very often. So, it’s important we get the message out there, and that people still recognize [bullying] as the danger it presents to youth.” Along with the button campaign, Visotski added, members of the council will present assemblies about bullying awareness and education Feb. 26 and 27 at Prairie Waters School, Indus School and Sarah Thompson School. “They’re done in a manner that can easily be understood and comprehended by younger kids, so that once they’ve had one of our presentations, hopefully, that knowledge will remain with them as they go into their adulthood,” he said. In Balzac, employees of the Toys “R” Us store in the CrossIron Mills shopping mall joined in with Pink Shirt Day Feb. 16, by giving away pink shirts printed with the slogan, “be a buddy, not a bully,” to the first 100 customers. The store’s employees will also wear pink shirts Feb. 27 as a show of solidarity with the national movement.