'Positive Footprint' Program in North Hempstead Teaches Children to Be Upstanders | Not in Our Town

'Positive Footprint' Program in North Hempstead Teaches Children to Be Upstanders

Supervisor Bosworth helping children with their positive footprints

North Hempstead Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth helping children with their positive footprints.


Visitors to the “Yes We Can” (YWC) Community Center in New Cassel, N.Y. will notice dozens of colorful footprints on the walls throughout the center, urging people to be an “upstander,” and not a bystander to incidents of bullying.

These artful and meaningful footprints were created by the dozens of youngsters attending the Center’s Summer Activity Program and are part of the Not In Our Town (NIOT) summer film program, which offered free films for community gatherings to galvanize support for hate crime response and prevention. North Hempstead Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth and Council Member Viviana Russell recently conducted a film viewing, discussion and art project with the more than 60 attendees in the summer activities program at YWC, who vary in age from 7 to 12 years old.

“When I learned about Not In Our Town’s free summer film program, I knew that we had a wonderful opportunity to reach a large number of young people with an anti-hate, anti-bullying message,” said Supervisor Bosworth.

“The film about leaving positive footprints served as an inspirational teaching tool to the children in our summer activities program,” said Council Member Russell. “I know they enjoyed the project and we were proud of their work being displayed around the community center for everyone to see.”

The program included having the children view a film called “Leaving a Positive Footprint,” that told the story of how students at Grimmer Elementary School in Freemont, California worked together to make the school a “bully-free zone,” and how to be an “upstander” as opposed to a bystander.

The film was followed by a lively discussion and an art project in which everyone at YWC’s Summer Activity program, traced their feet, cut them out and then wrote inspirational sayings, and anti-bullying slogans. The “positive footprints” were then hung on the walls throughout the facility to help inspire other people to be “upstanders.”

Hempstead Council Member Viviana Russell looks on as the children create their positive footprints.

North Hempstead Council Member Viviana Russell looks on as the children create their positive footprints.


“The anti-bullying message really resounded with our young people in the summer program,” said the Supervisor. “They were all so creative and thoughtful in making their footprints and I know that they will carry that anti-bullying message though to their own schools in September.”

NIOT addresses issues of hate and bullying, with the goal of building safe, inclusive communities for all. The Town continues to support this movement today. The Town of North Hempstead became involved in the NIOT program in 2017.


Learn More

United Against Hate Week — The week of November 17-22, 2019 has been designated United Against Hate Week. The campaign is designed to bring communities together to learn from each other, surface local concerns and seek solutions. We hope you will save the date and join us! Learn how to get involved.

Stop Hate Action Kits — As hate group activities and hate and bias incidents rise, concerned community, campus, school, civic, faith and law enforcement leaders and activists actions are needed more than ever. These guides provide effective steps that can help communities face hate and bigotry, and work toward a more inclusive future.

About NIOT — Learn more about what we do and all the ways you can get involved with the NIOT movement.


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