10/9/2013 8:03:00 AM Million Misfit Sock March will raise awareness of bullying
Elizabeth Vicory, age 10, shown while riding with Horses with HEART, spoke to the Chino Valley Town Council about the need to combat bullying.
Kathi Sabot Chino Valley Review
Organizers of the Million Misfit Sock March want to put an end to bullying. The march is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 25, and you can participate simply by digging into your sock drawer and finding the perfect pair of misfit socks. Wearing mismatched socks symbolizes the diverse community, and the unique gifts each person shares.
"Statistically, a child is bullied every seven minutes. It can start as early as pre-school and last a lifetime," coordinators Maddie and McKenna Kiefer posted on their site, www.misfituniversity.com/millionmisfitsockmarch.html.
"The march is all about building community, and spreading the word that our differences matter; that it's important to celebrate who we are and what makes us different."
Elizabeth Vicory, age 10, experienced bullying in Chino Valley. She bravely stood before the Chino Valley Town Council this past month, and spoke about the need for support from public institutions to help combat bullying. Her "nana" Carol, and mom Suzanne helped her create a booth at the Territorial Days Parade, to spark the public's awareness of the value of each person and promote the Million Misfit March. Elizabeth will present information on the march to the Yavapai County Supervisor Craig Brown on Oct. 7.
"We get to tell people not to be bullies," she said. "Bullies do bad things, they call names. This girl who used to be in my classroom would step on my foot. She had on boots and put her heel there and pushed real hard."
"We switched her to a new school due to the bullying she received from an adult in the Chino Valley community. Elizabeth was receiving verbal bullying on almost a daily basis," said her mother.
For families, teachers, churches and those seeking ways to teach their children how to honor differences, an anti-bullying curriculum is available online at www.themisfitsock.com.
"Bullies come in all shapes and sizes," Suzanne said. "The public schools are not doing a very good job of dealing with bullying. I overheard an overweight girl in school get called horrible names, and the teacher just let it go on. She was just in second grade."
"If we just say, 'kids will be kids,' then we will end up with mean adults. They will just grow up and teach the next generation the same thing," she added. "I know of another child who asked his mom not to address the issues at his school because he was afraid of more severe bullying."
The Misfit University curriculum celebrates love, hope, inspiration and gratitude for each person's value and differences. On Oct. 25, marches will take place across the U.S. In Chino Valley, Elizabeth wants to promote a school poster and essay contest, with an awards ceremony honoring acceptance and tolerance.
The Chino Valley ambassadors for the Oct. 25 event are Elizabeth Vicory of Mingus Springs School, and her mom, Suzanne Vicory.
They can be reached at 928-899-3582 or by email at email@example.com.