Caitlin Prater-Haacke is an Alberta high school student whose locker was broken into on September 25th. Her own iPad was used to post an ugly message to her on her own Facebook account. Her mother was the first to see the message, which encouraged her to die. Unlike her mother, Caitlin didn’t get mad. She also didn’t get even.
Instead, she got inspired to do something positive to combat bullying at her school. Inspired by something she had seen on Pinterest, she wrote positive messages on 850 post-it notes of various sizes and colors. On October 6, she put one on every single locker and all over the bathrooms at George McDougall High School, her high school in Airdrie.
She said “Bullying is not necessarily addressed, and people get really down about it,” and “I wanted to do something positive — it was about due time.” The school did not see it that way. A teacher pulled her out of class, yelled at her for littering and lectured her that the “janitors weren’t there to clean up after her.”
Her mom’s Facebook post about the incident garnered hundreds of comments. Ultimately, the city declared October 9th to be “Thursday Positive Post-it Day.”
Not only did the school ultimately embrace this movement, but so did many local businesses, such as banks. When interviewed, people indicated it was a chance to be reminded that they made a difference in the lives of other people, sometimes more than they realized.