WINTERPORT, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Although schools in Maine are trying to crack down on bullying, several sources say the state continues to have some of highest bullying rates in the country. To stop it, a group of middle school students in Winterport are taking matters into their own hands.
Who knew that a mixture of flower and water and the stroke of a paint brush could help put an end to bullying?
Three years ago, street artist Pigeon, realized art holds that power.
His Mainer Project depicts various portraits of people from different ethnicities, origins and sexual orientations. They have been popping up all over the state, with the purpose to welcome each other’s differences.
“Then it evolved into much more of a question then a conversation about what it means to be a Mainer,” he said.
His message to try to understand each other, is being received by kids.
“I did get bullied and they were telling me that I was fat and dumb,” said fifth grade student, Ruby Tracy. “We want to help stop it because it’s just not right, it literally breaks my heart into a thousand pieces.”
She and her civil rights team looked to Pigeon for inspiration.
Although the Samuel L. Wagner middle school is predominantly white, their portraits of one another show how they are unique in their own ways, and why that should be embraced.
“None of them are the same, like people, none of them are the same,” said Tracy.
So, for the next nine months this mural will serve as a reminder to all students, that they belong.
The school’s civil rights group who was behind the project said they hope this will inspire other schools in Maine to do the same.