MONTROSE, Colo. (KKCO/KJCT)-- It’s National Bullying Prevention Month, and the Montrose nonprofit Peer Kindness is working to get their community informed and engaged.
The district received a grant from the Colorado Department of Education for bully prevention programs in schools.
Montrose elementary schools had the opportunity to meet YouTube star Josh Drean, he traveled all the way from Boston to talk to all six schools about kindness and anti-bullying.
"You can treat them how you want them to treat you,” said 4th grader at Johnson Elementary David Rodriguez.
"To be kind to everyone,” said 4th grader at Johnson Elementary Maliah Leiba.
Bullying isn't always easy to notice.
"It's a great message about not bullying about being kind to others,” said Johnson Elementary School Counselor Jean Granberg.
Bullying can come physically, emotionally, and now more than ever, online.
"On social media half of our feed is negativity and just angry words and it doesn't have to be that way if we can focus on the positives then we can shift the school culture to a thing that is better and more appropriate than we can ever imagine,” said youth motivational speaker and YouTube star Josh Drean.
He uses his YouTube stardom to end bullying.
"He really connects with the kids you know the beatboxing the YouTubeing the fact that he attends Harvard that's all you know really good goals and aspirations for them,” said Granberg.
Letting students know if he can make it through bullying and go to Harvard, anything is possible.
"I have watched his videos on YouTube and they are an inspiration to how I live my life,” said 4th grader Anika Harris.
The nonprofit Peer Kindness works all year round to end bullying.
“It's a national, actually international topic that we all need to get involved in,” said Pure Kindness executive director Robyn Shank.
Leaving behind one message.
"There are a lot of organizations and programs that tend to focus on the negatives, they talk about the violence and the suicide and research shows focusing on the negatives produces negative results. So if we can have fun and promote positive behaviors in the students then we can truly see the changes in their schools,” said Drean.
Teachers will continue to educate their students about kindness and anti-bullying as part of their regular curriculum by focusing on specific topics each week.
Peer Kindness will be hosting a block Zumba party Friday at 7 p.m. at the Montrose Recreation District and their annual kind and dine event Saturday.