Special Report By: Hayley Grimshaw (all pics courtesy Hayley)
Anti-bullying teen advocate for TRUCE: promoting cyber-kindness
What does a basketball game have in common with “The Hunger Games”?
The answer: Josh Hutcherson!
The popular movie star of “Journey to the Center of the Earth”, “Zathura” and, of course, as Peeta Mellark in ‘The Hunger Games” played in a Nike 3-on-3 celebrity basketball game in LA on August 8th, 2014 to raise money and awareness for Straight But Not Narrow. SBNN’s anti-bullying mission is to encourage straight people to support gay people
Why basketball? Being from Kentucky, Hutcherson is a huge University of Kentucky fan. He plays in an entertainment league team and finds it’s a fun way to raise awareness and money for a good cause.
At the event, Josh said he fully believes in “standing up for people no matter [their] race, religion or sexual orientation”. And to ultimately say, “What does it matter?”
SBNN has now evolved into a full-fledged charity with merchandise and events to promote acceptance. Event organizers Heather Wilk and Andre Pochon, and their company Cause Creative Marketing, also work to further promote SBNN.
There were about 300 people who came to support SBNN and meet Hutcherson. While waiting in the “meet and greet” line, people of all ages talked to one another about why they were there. Mostly to see Josh, but everyone also agreed SBNN is a good cause. We all may have started as fans of Hutcherson’s, but we all became our own village in support of SBNN.
When people met Hutcherson, there were different degrees of reaction: most screeched, some just giggled, and others actually cried(!) — but all seemed to agree that he is a super nice, cute and talented actor. He really listened and made eye-contact with his fans, and kindly posed for pictures.
This reporter, Hayley Grimshaw, co-founder of TRUCE, a cyber-kindness cause in Marin Co, took the opportunity to spread the word of our cause.
The idea for TRUCE came from teen suicide tragedies in Marin County two years ago and the possibility that cyber-bullying was a factor. TRUCE stands for: Tolerance, Respect, Understanding, Compassion and Empathy. In fact, it was launched on John Lennon’s birthday (10/9/10) and, as a show of respect to his iconic “Give Peace a Chance,” uses a peace sign in its logo.
As Peeta calls for in “Mockingjay”, (book 3 of “The Hunger Games”): “Cease-fire”.
Upon being introduced to the TRUCE idea, Josh told Hayley, “Right on! We need more people like you!”
Both SBNN and Truce share similar goals: To reach out to teens across the country and spread the word about the importance of acceptance.
Whats next for TRUCE: outreach to more teens and share thumb rings, in hopes they will remind teens to not send mean texts. Plus, more social networking outreach and supporting SBNN, other Gay/Straight Alliances, non-bullying, and other positive causes.
Feel free to ‘Like” both causes on Facebook: