Thanks for checking in! WE DELIVERED!
Bailey received 836 LETTERS of peer support on 6/24/2018,
and a record-breaking number of gifts to support her art!
Bailey (10) sent us the BEST THANK-YOU DRAWING ever; it's epic!
Bailey drew our Ambassadors on the rainbow with their words of support that she read in her Friend Mail: BE STRONG; HAVE HOPE; BE BRAVE; WE LOVE YOU!
"You don't know how happy I am for what you guys did.
I'm so happy that I know a lot of people care about me."
A FAMILY'S HEARTFELT SURPRISE PRESENTATION 6/24/2018:
Bailey's parents created this awesome video for us to share in the surprise moment of their Friend Mail presentation to 4th Grader, Bailey! They had Bailey sit in the "Seat of Honor," a new family tradition where one member of the family is selected to sit in the chair as others say something positive and of value about them. They included some of those individuals inside of the video. A personal video from the Be-A-Friend Project served as a transition while they surprised her with the FRIEND MAIL package. They included a special thank you from Bailey at the end of this 3-minute video!
BAILEY'S DAD - just the BEST DAD EVER - starts the presentation saying: "Today we want to honor you, baby, because everyone in here knows you, loves you, and we're going to make sure you know that..." (TEARS!!)
PICTURES OF BAILEY'S SURPRISE, LETTERS AND WRITERS:
Along with 836 letters of support, Bailey received handmade Dance Tutus from Bushland, Texas, students to support her love of dance, and Art Supplies to support her love of Art.
OCTOBER 2018 UPDATE:
"MARIAH'S MUSIC & ARTS" EXTENDS SUPER-SPECIAL INVITE TO BAILEY!
Bailey's Friend Mail included a beautiful invite from Producer/Director MARIAH SNOW of Mariah's Music & Arts, the FIRST WORLDWIDE LICENSEE OF "IT'S EASY! The Friend Strong Musical" to come to the premiere with her family.
BAFP Co-Founders and Co-Creators of "It's Easy!", Jennifer Young and January Akselrad, were thrilled to travel from NY to Virginia to see Mariah's production and get the chance to meet Bailey in person! Mariah invited BAFP Executive Director, Jennifer Young, on stage to talk about the Project and then surprised Bailey by asking her to join them on stage where she received flowers from cast member, Peter Wettergreen!
Bailey also visited the Be A Friend Project table set up in Mariah's lobby and wrote a note to the new Recipient, "AYDEN"!
10-year-old Washington DC artist
"just wanted the bullies to stop"
Bailey's dad says his daughter is "real quiet" and a "fun loving girl surrounded by friends"... but not even one of those friends stood up for her through an entire school year of physical and verbal bullying by some boys in her fourth grade class. Bailey reached out to tell her teachers several times over the year, but nothing changed and the bullying continued. "There's no one to support me in standing up to the bullies," Bailey felt.
Beautiful Bailey is petite, just like her mom, and most of the verbal bullying is related to being small as compared to her classmates. The boys called her "SHORTY" and other names. They PUSHED HER AROUND, STOLE and PURPOSELY BROKE HER MOST BELOVED THINGS. They stole her jacket and threw it in the hallway. They took and BROKE HER ART SUPPLIES.
BAILEY'S PASSION IS ART!! She also loves roller skating, crafts, building with LEGOs (she gets a new set every year) and is "all about bright colors." She hopes to be a professional artist (and a vet) when she grows up! SHE DRAWS A LOT and her pictures are everywhere in their home.
So in April, when the BULLIES TOOK HER FAVORITE DRAWING PENCIL and purposely snapped it, and there was no one to help her, Bailey snapped, too. She just couldn't take it anymore. She went to the Girl's Room and struggled with hopeless thoughts of what she might do to make the bullies finally stop and leave her alone.
Because being bullied made Bailey feel too sad and like giving up, Bailey's parents took her out of that school and, after trying homeschooling, they enrolled her in a new school that she will start this week. "She's scared," says her dad, coming in so late in the year and being the new kid without her friends or knowing anyone at all.
WE HOPE TO SHOW BAILEY THAT SHE HAS FRIENDS READY TO STAND UP FOR HER! It is going to take a lot of kindness and support to overcome a year of cruelty!