It takes a lot for a 1st grader to decide to commit suicide, but that is exactly what Gavin had decided to do. Day-in and day-out a bully had targeted Gavin and escalated from name-calling to telling him that he needed to kill himself. It was all too much for this shy, serious, sensitive boy, but fortunately he decided to confide in his mom, since she had stayed home sick that day instead of carrying out his plan.
Self-confidence, trust in your classmates, and finding your voice after such an experience is not something easily fixed.
At the end of fifth grade, something changed. Gavin, his little brother, and his dad all started Taekwondo and the light that had been flipped off behind Gavin’s eyes was suddenly back and with huge strides forward. The first time he raised his hand and volunteered to demonstrate a kick, his parents turned to each other and shrieked with excitement. He had found his confidence and, Gavin thought of the other kids out there who are still stuck – depressed, anxious, lacking a voice still. He wanted to give that to all of them!
Gavin’s dream became a reality and he hosted a lemonade stand that raised a grand total of $1,200, including the $500 matching grant he won from Nextdoor.com. He was proud to distribute the anti-cyberbullying stickers from David’s Legacy Foundation and showed each person the sticker he keeps on his phone case. He is already planning what to do next to help other kids and find other ways to build confidence in all kids to stand up for their friends against bullies.