Wearing pink with a twist of sunshine


Taieri College pupils put their own twist on Pink Shirt Day.

As part of their internal assessment, a group of level 2 health pupils encouraged staff and pupils to wear a yellow accessory to promote happiness and inclusion.

Emily Landrebe, Monique Harper, Piper Dalton and Millie-Grace Kelly decided they wanted to focus on improving pupils’ mental health.

“We wanted to do something no-one had done [so] we came up with this idea to do a yellow day,” Emily said.

“Yellow is linked with positivity.

“When you see yellow your mind connects it to happiness and smiles.”

While they initially wanted to hold a separate mufti day and get everyone to wear yellow clothing, they settled on incorporating it into the nationwide Pink Shirt Day campaign.

“Wearing yellow [on Friday was] a way for people to include themselves and actually be a part of something.

“Even though it’s small, it’s enough to bring people together.”

Piper said it was all about making people feel included.

“We have noticed a lot of people feeling down . . . and we thought if we did something like this everyone has the chance to be a part of it.”

They were unsure if pupils would like the idea, but were surprised by how many wore both pink and yellow accessories with their school uniforms.

“It’s worked out really well so far,” Millie-Grace said.

“We’ve seen quite a lot of people in yellow.

“Everyone seems to be happy just to be part of it.”

The pupils’ yellow accessories included ties, socks, earrings, hair accessories and nail polish.

Millie-Grace said she was pleased to see so many people wearing yellow, especially those who were often left out or alone.

“That was a really cool thing to see.”

Other groups in the health class made cupcakes to give to teachers, played games with year 7 and 8 pupils to promote inclusion and fun, and left Post-it notes with positive messages in the bathrooms.