Cherokee Trail High School inspires a culture of "be kind."
Be Kind Group

Cherokee Trail High School (CTHS) is creating a culture of ‘be kind.’ To kick off 2024, the Be Kind Club started a 21-day kindness challenge. Instead of a New Year's resolution, they encourage everyone to participate by creating a habit of spreading kindness.

“It's awesome to see people in our community getting involved and excited,” senior Sade Davis said. “I love seeing people wearing ‘be kind.’ shirts at the gym, the mall, and so many other places. And these challenges are encouraging people to spread and practice kindness, be great humans, and be kind.”

Be Kind T-Shirts

Some examples of the simple acts of kindness for the challenge include sending a kind message to someone they haven’t talked to in a while, giving a random compliment to a family member or someone new, and giving a hug to someone who’s having a bad day.

“We came up with the 21 days of kindness challenge because it has been proven that it takes 21 days of an action to break or form a habit,” junior Cooper Rickards explained.

“I’ve said many thanks to my trusted adults who’ve helped me,” junior Jacob Mathenge said. “I’ve held the door for lots of people. I’ve done chores without asking, and I've hung out with my little brother every day.”

“It’s so important because there are kids getting out of their comfort zone to get involved and making others' day with a simple compliment or gesture,” senior Braedan Reichert added. “Being kind goes so much deeper in regard to the way it truly does make people feel.”

Be Kind Family

The Be Kind Club sells apparel with the simple message ‘be kind.’ in 21 different colors to represent the number of days to create a habit. All of the funds from the sales go back to helping the community. The club has supported DECA in their food drve, bought toys for the toy drives done by the wrestling, football, and baseball teams during the holidays. CTHS has sent more than $2,000 to a high school in Lahaina, Hawaii, where the wildfires destroyed their school in August. The money will be used to purchase caps and gowns for the 2024 graduates.

Be Kind Kid

“I love how people have really immersed themselves into the club,” CTHS junior Maren Rathman said. “I haven’t met all of them, but it is always cool to see new faces in the club.”

The number of students in the club is hard to calculate because it is constantly growing. CTHS Teacher Tammy Johnson helped start the Be Kind Campaign in 2018 after the Parkland Shooting, and it was rebooted in the spring of 2023.

“She brings students together from all different backgrounds, activities, and classes,” sophomore Jennifer Tejawijaya added. “Everyone is joining for the right reasons.”

“It’s awesome that we have such a large group that all have the common goal of spreading kindness,” sophomore Chloe Luo said. “I think it is the coolest club ever!”

Those in the club say students join out of selflessness and a genuine desire to make an impact.

“I like supporting other people and the community,” junior Peyton Michlig said. “Create a family, even if it is not your family.”

Being Kind

“This is entirely for our community to build a culture,” sophomore Norris Sun explained. “When we walk down the hall, people are wearing our shirts, embodying that message. Everyone is trying to be better, make better choices, to ‘be kind.’ When I see that, everything I’ve done is worth it... it is really fulfilling.”

Running Kind

That spirit of kindness is spreading to elementary schools and beyond. Club members gave out bracelets with the ‘be kind.’ message to 13 elementary schools along with a letter to principals explaining the campaign. Also, this year the club hosted new events like the Turkey Trot in November, which included a lot of local businesses joining the efforts. The school will host Pack the Gym with Kindness on Wednesday, January 17 at 4 p.m., encouraging fans to wear their ‘be kind.’ shirts to support Unified athletes from Grandview High School and CTHS. In February, the club will be supporting Make-A-Wish during Wish Week and the district during the food drive for local food banks.

"My hope through “be kind.” is that everyone at CT knows that they have a friend, someone they can count on to be kind," junior Kennedy Brian said.

“Participating in something that's bigger than yourself is always worth experiencing,” senior Chiara Pryor said.

If you would like to support the ‘be kind.’ campaign and would like to purchase a shirt, please click here. They ask that you post your random acts on your Instagram story or pictures of you wearing your ‘be kind.’ swag and tag @cths.bekind so they can repost and watch kindness spread throughout the year and community!

Story posted on 1/12/2024.
TV Report aired 1/17/2024