A group of local youths from the Boys & Girls Club of Venice were recognized March 27 with a first place prize for their anti-bullying campaign that was part of a nationwide service project.
The youths aged 11 to 13 were recognized for their campaign called S.T.O.P. (Stop Teasing Other People) and for their service to the community. They are part of the B.E.S.T. Torch Club, which stands for Build, Educate and Serve through Teamwork. Their campaign was selected out of nearly 250 entries nationwide.
The Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Staples Foundation, which is the charitable arm of Staples Inc., created the "Linking Hearts and Hands" national service project. The Staples Foundation presented the Torch Club with a $2,500 check for their accomplishment.
The club's campaign included: candy grams with encouraging messages to help bullying victims, gathering signatures for an anti-bullying petition, establishing an anti-violence gaming policy in the club's computer room and using Facebook to take a stand against bullying.