Members of the community came together today in Opelousas to raise anti-bullying awareness.
The Listen, Leave, Tell event was held at South City Park and was presented by Bullybox founder Shauna Sias.
Paula Jordan, Bullybox program director, explained that the event is in memory of Treah Thyssen, a student in Baton Rouge who lost his life earlier this year. She said their mission is to give a voice to children who feel they're voiceless and to let them know there is always someone they can talk to and someone who loves them.
Today's event featured live music, comedy, a talent showcase featuring local youth, and also testimonials from young members of the community. Attendees also heard from Roslyn Thyssen, Treah's mother, and the principal of Opelousas High School about how their Bullybox is working. Opelousas High School was the first school to receive a Bullybox.
Jordan said her favorite part of the event is bringing young people together.
"We hear so many negatives about our youth...today it's positive. We're going to take something that was a sad, tragic event and we're going to turn it into a positive message for the community."
The Bullybox was created after Sias heard the story of Treah Thyssen and was heartbroken. She came up with the idea to allow children and youth an outlet to express their feelings and their situation to someone who cares.
Jordan thanked Sias for her vision and expressed her wishes to continue Sias' mission.
If any school is interested in receiving a Bullybox, they can contact Paula Jordan at 337-509-4102 or contact the organization at firstname.lastname@example.org.