What better way to celebrate Pink Shirt Day by treating your friends to a compliment. And what if that compliment came with a cupcake?
That’s the idea behind The North Okanagan Youth and Family Services Society (NOYFSS)’s annual cupcake sale, which was held at Bean Scene and the NOYFSS office Wednesday morning.
Brooke Vasconcelos, group facilitator with NOYFSS calls them “compliment” cupcakes because each cup-sized confection comes with a flag bearing a compliment.
“We have everything from ‘You make people smile’ to ‘You’re talented’ to ‘You are my sunshine,’” Vasconcelos explained. “It’s kind of like a fortune cookie — but better.”
She said the cupcake sale isn’t a new fundraiser, but the idea to include compliments on each one, was started only a few years ago, as NOYFSS’s way of spreading their message while promoting their anti-bullying program.
“They help us spread kindness, and say kind things to each other, and be the kind of people we like to see in the world,” Vasconcelos explained. She said staff and volunteers baked and frosted 1,200 cupcakes in preparation for the sale.
The cupcakes are also frosted with pink icing as a nod to Pink Shirt Day, also known as Anti-Bullying Day, a day when people wear a pink shirts to symbolize a stand against bullying.
The idea originated in Nova Scotia in 2007, when two teenaged-boys and their friends organized a high-school protest to wear pink in sympathy with a Grade 9 boy who was being bullied for wearing a pink shirt. The concept quickly spread and is celebrated on various dates around the world.
Proceeds from the cupcakes will go to NOYFSS’s Taking Care of You and Me program, an anti-bullying group that focuses on relationship-building activities, and working with seniors who have dementia.
Vasconcelos said the concept of the program is to help participants gain self-esteem by teaching them to put the needs of others before their own.
To learn more about NOYFSS or their anti-bullying programs visit www.noyfssorg