make it better

Mar 15

Lillard, Les Schwab And adidas Take The 'Respect. Pass It On.' Campaign To Parkrose Middle School

By make it better Posted in: Blazers, damianlillard, Pistons

Damian Lillard has been on a roll in the month of March. He's shooting 54 percent from the field, 43 percent from three and averaging 25.0 points, 7.0 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.1 steals through the first six games of the month.

But Lillard's hot streak hasn't been exclusive to basketball. In fact, you could argue his most important work has been off the court as the spokesperson for the "Respect. Pass It On." anti-bullying campaign. Since the start of the campaign, over 4,000 people have taken the pledge to stand up against bullying, including the students at Parkrose Middle School where Lillard, Les Schwab Tires and adidas, all partners in the effort, held an assembly to promote the importance of treating people with respect.

"For me it's sad because parents send their children to school to learn and to meet friends and enjoy themselves," said Lillard to the 800 students, faculty and staff in attendance. "For them to have to come and experience being bullied and picked on, I think the main thing is it effects their confidence, their self-esteem and it cam effect them way past school."

During the assembly, Lillard talked about having friends who were subject to bullying and how those experiences prompted him to get involved with the "Respect. Pass It On." campaign. He implored the audience to take responsibility for their actions and comments and to realize that they can be a powerful force to end bullying by simply acknowledging of the problem.

"I know it's not like we can just go out and stop (bullying) from happening," said Lillard, "because it's probably going to happen, but I want people to be aware … I think the main goal is to make people more aware of what's going on and how important it is."

"I think just having somebody who is choosing to come here and share his message, I think that brings a lot of positive attention to it, to not only the students but the community," said Molly Ouche, principal at Parkrose Middle School. "People are going to pay attention when Damian Lillard takes time to go to a middle school and talk about bullying."

Even Lillard's presence at Parkrose Middle School helped raise confidence at a school in an often-overlooked part of Portland.

"There's great things happening here," said Ouche. "They were interviewing one of our students earlier and they asked 'How do you feel about them choosing Parkrose?' and he said 'They should choose Parkrose because we're working hard and we're doing good things and we deserve to get noticed.' For a student to say that and not the principal or the teachers who should say that was really powerful."

(Click here to take the pledge to demonstrate respect and pass it on.)


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