BETHANY — Rachel's Challenge, a program that focuses on kindness and compassion in an effort to stop bullying, is scheduled for 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at Western Oaks Middle School, 7200 NW 23 in the Putnam City School District.
Rachel Scott was the first person killed at Columbine High School on April 20, 1999. Immediately after the tragedy, her father, Darrell, began to speak and use writings and drawings from Rachel's diaries to illustrate the need for a kinder, more compassionate world.
Today, lessons from Rachel's diaries have become the basis for school and community presentations across the country.
The program encourages parents and other community members to adopt Rachel's challenges and put them into daily practice. Rachel's challenges include looking for the best in others, eliminating prejudice, setting goals and following dreams, choosing positive influences, speaking and acting with kindness, and starting a chain reaction of such positive ideals with family and friends.
Students will be part of Rachel's Challenge programs during the day, but the evening program — appropriate for adults and children 12 and older — gives parents and other community members information they need.
“Adults who come to this program, no matter who they are or what connection they might have to schools, will leave with a better understanding of the everyday lives of students. Plus, too, it's a powerful program with a simple and important message, which is that anyone can change their family, business, community and world by starting a chain reaction of kindness and compassion,” said Western Oaks Middle School counselor Mary Beth Yockey.