Westport Kids Take To The Streets In Search Of Kindness

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Westport third-graders and Staples High School students involved in the Kool to be Kind anti-bullying program promote the program's second annual Scavenger Hunt for Kindness on Thursday evening. Photo Credit: Contributed: Stephanie Syrop Webster

WESTPORT, Conn. – Hundreds of Westport third-graders are on the hunt for signs of kindness — literally — as part of the second annual Kool to be Kind “Scavenger Hunt for Kindness.”

Kool to be Kind is an empathy-based, anti-bullying program taught in all Westport third-grade classes by trained Staples High School students. As part of the hunt, the third-graders are challenged to find as many “Ally Power” posters as they can. These posters — created by the students with help from their teen mentors — have been placed in 50 stores across town.

“This Scavenger Hunt for Kindness is an attempt to raise awareness outside of the school and into the community,” Kool to be Kind co-founder Sarah Green said.

The students solve clues to find the posters, and when a student finds one, he or she will ask a store employee what kindness the business performs in the community, Green said.

“The 50 local businesses who are participating have shown overwhelming support of the program and have kindly agreed to participate,” she said.

Green and the other Kool to be Kind organizers hope that the scavenger hunt not only spreads anti-bullying awareness throughout the community, but that it also helps boost business for the participating shops.

The Kool to be Kind program was created two years ago by Green, Cindy Eigen, Lynne Goldstein and Melissa Shein. Through the program, trained Staples students go into third-grade classrooms five times during the school year and teach interactive lessons focused on kindness, empathy, the creation of allies and dealing with tough situations.

The program is now organized by Green, Eigen, Goldstein and Karen Varsano.

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