Student turning "Little BIG Idea" grant into anti-bullying efforts
NAPPANEE, Ind. - A fourth grader at Nappanee's Woodview Elementary has big anti-bullying plans for his thousand-dollar "Little BIG Idea" grant from Elkhart County.
“I used to get bullied like a lot in school...What I was going through is just people calling me mean names. They didn’t even know me, and they were being so mean," said fourth grader Trot Thompson.
Trot says his mom came to him with a "big idea."
His mom, Jen Thompson, says she found a flier for Elkhart County's "Little BIG Idea" grants and suggested Trot apply.
The grants are part of the Vibrant Communities initiative.
They dole out monthly $1,000 checks to community members like Trot who have little ideas that could become a big help for their neighbors.
The committee surprised Trot with his check in class last Friday.
“I was super surprised, because wow I mean an over-sized check with my name on it. That’s amazing," he said.
“[We're] just really proud that he’s willing to stick himself out there and go for something and learn that if you try hard, you can accomplish something,"said his dad, Patrick Thompson.
Trot already has some plans on the drawing board.
They include a buddy bench, an assembly with a guest speaker, and wristbands with this phrase:
“We stick together like bubblegum."
“Some of the problems we see in our society are kids that are or have been bullied and don’t have people that stand up for them and don’t show them that they’re loved and accepted and so that’s really what we are trying to get is for kids to love each other and respect each other and let them know that they’re in this thing called life together," said Trot's dad.
“All you need is an idea and then just finding the right place and the right people, and it can go big, and I think that’s exciting," said his mom, Jen.
Trot has a simple goal.
“No one bullies anymore just to stop that.”
The Thompson family will be meeting with school administrators in the next few weeks to figure out how to turn their ideas into a reality.