This past week, my team and I had the pleasure and opportunity to play host to Tad & “Bullying Ends Here” during his current three week tour across 4 different provinces. During his two day visit to Thunder Bay, Tad did a total of 5 presentations (4 local high schools and then a smaller one for clients and business partners). The 2 day visit was a huge success for so many different reasons!
Leading up to his time in Thunder Bay, we worked with the School Resources Officers from the Thunder Bay Police Service who helped me coordinate the presentations with 4 of our local high schools. Prior to and during the presentations, our team met some amazing community leaders, business leaders, Police Officers, Principals, Teachers and other community youth resource team members. Speaking with them one on one, we were blown away by the challenges these leaders face every day and the incredible work they are doing to educate our youth, while at the same time doing everything they can to keep them safe from things like Bullying.
During his visit, Tad spoke with just over 1500 grade 9 & 10 students. I have now heard Tad speak a total of 6 times and his message is remarkable, Tad’s talk is a wakeup call. However, for me the most impactful part of his visit wasn’t the speech itself, it was watching a group of high school students sitting together completely captivated by his message. My team and I had an opportunity to sit back and watch as brave students asked questions, personally walked up to Tad after the presentation to share with him how meaningful his presentation was and to share their stories about how they have been personally impacted by bullying. We didn’t have to hear what the students were telling Tad, we could just tell from the look on their faces that his presentation had made a difference.
Throughout the two days, we received incredible feedback from the Principals, Teachers, Student Resource Police Officers with the Thunder Bay Police Service, business partners and community leaders. Comments like…
“That was a hard message to hear, but one that all students should have the opportunity to listen to” and
“Tad’s messages about bullying is the best I have ever heard during my time as a teacher”
One of our local business leaders, a hotel operator, went as far as to offer Tad support for any visits that happen to take place in communities that they have hotels.
As a parent of a toddler, I do worry about what school life will be like for my son when he is finally old enough to go. The work that Tad is doing is having an impact and I had the opportunity to witness it personally here in Thunder Bay. Getting to know Tad personally this past week, I can say that he truly is a remarkable individual with a passion and a drive to make a difference. With that said, there are countless community leaders right here in Thunder Bay that work every day to make our community a better place for families, friends, clients, co-workers, staff, and individuals that they have never even met in person.
Some of those local leaders jumped at the opportunity to help make Tad’s trip to Thunder Bay possible and I would like to express my sincere thanks to the following businesses, organizations and individuals:
- Brianna Shortreed & Gina Winters – Lawrence Mortgage Team
- The Valhalla Inn – for your support with Tad’s stay in Thunder Bay
- Crystal Verescrak – Royal LePage Lannon Realty
- Peter Marchl – NorMaxx Financial
- Bruno’s Contracting
- The School Resource Officers with the Thunder Bay Police Service
- All of the Principals and Teachers at…
- Superior CVI
- Hammarskjold High School
- Westgate High School, and
- Patrick High School
Without their support and leadership, 1500 local students would not have had the opportunity to hear Tad speak. Thank you all very much for everything you continue to do to make Thunder Bay a great place to call home.
For more information about Bully Ends Here and Tad’s story, please visit www.BullyingEndsHere.ca