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Newport-Mesa Enters Into Partnership with Student-Created Nonprofit to Support Kindness
Posted 11/21/22

Let's Be Kind collage

In 2018, as an eighth-grader at Costa Mesa Middle School, Rebekah Robeck noticed a general unkindness amongst her friends. They would step on her shoes or call her names — behavior that might not get flagged as bullying but was upsetting and frustrating. Her mom, Cristina, suggested she bring some pizza to school as an example of kindness. Armed with pizza boxes emblazoned with signs reading “Let’s be kind to each other,” Rebekah started a conversation and a movement.

What started with pizzas on one middle school campus has grown into an organization that is now positively impacting schools throughout Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD). Formed by Rebekah and her mom in 2019, Let’s Be Kind has garnered support from local sponsors such as Vans, Fill Bakeshop and the City of Costa Mesa. In addition to its partnership with NMUSD, the movement has touched campuses in other Orange County schools, including those in Irvine and Anaheim. 

“Let’s Be Kind helps everyone from students to principals to classroom assistants feel included and a part of their school community, which is essential to the positive environments we want to foster on our campuses,” said Assistant Superintendent of Student Support Services Dr. Sara Jocham.  

In collaboration with Let’s Be Kind, elementary schools typically host a week of activities that delve deeper into the message of spreading kindness with students completing a series of kind acts, and in return, they get a letter from the Kindness Fairy.    

On middle and high school campuses, Let’s Be Kind events typically include a DJ, doughnut wall, cotton candy machine, photo and/or 360-degree video booths, confetti cannons, inflatable slides, giveaways, and more for their lunchtime Let’s Be Kind activities. Though the organization provides signs and balloons to make the campus look festive, school ASB students are encouraged to create their own signs and decorations to help build teamwork and camaraderie among students throughout the campus. Schools are also given spray chalk to copy the Let’s Be Kind logo throughout campus as gentle reminders that kindness starts within us. On any given day, you can also see students wearing their signature Let's Be Kind shirts.

Rebekah is now a freshman at Vanguard University, however, she and Cristina are present at all events, handing out T-shirts and spreading the message behind Let’s Be Kind. 

Para acceder a los sitios web del NMUSD en español, por favor seleccione el botón “Select Language” en la parte superior derecha de cualquier página web del distrito o escuela y seleccione “Spanish.”