Belo Corporation has announced a company-wide initiative across its 20 television stations, including WCNC in Charlotte, to raise awareness for Rachel's Challenge. The non-profit organization promotes kindness and compassion, with a focus on schools.
Namesake Rachel Joy Scott was a student attending Columbine High School in April 1999 and was the first person killed in the tragedy. Her father, Darrell, began speaking around the country after her death and used writings and drawings from Rachel's diaries to illustrate the need for a kinder, more compassionate nation.
Today, Darrell and other speakers continue to honor Rachel's life by taking her message into schools and businesses. Belo's television stations, in all of its 15 markets across the U.S., will support the efforts of the organization by partnering with Rachel's Challenge to bring awareness of this important message to its communities.
"It has long been a part of the Belo culture to serve our markets by bringing quality news to our viewers and acting as a conduit to positively impact the local communities," said Katherine E. Clements, Belo's Sr. VP/Media Operations. “Rachel's Challenge fundamentally makes a positive impact on children's lives and we are honored to expand our support in all markets for such a fine organization that helps kids negotiate the challenges of their young lives," she added.
"Rachel's Challenge exists to inspire, equip and empower every person to create a permanent positive culture change in their school, business and community by starting a chain reaction of kindness and compassion. The extraordinary support from Belo and its television stations will elevate our efforts to a new level" said Darrell Scott.
Belo began its support of Rachel's Challenge a few years ago when KTVB, Belo's NBC station in Boise, partnered with Rachel's Challenge by promoting and covering assemblies held in area high schools and junior high schools. The station plans on expanding its support to the elementary school level beginning this year. In addition, Doug Armstrong, KTVB's president and General Manager, currently serves on the Rachel's Challenge National Advisory Board.
WFAA-TV, Belo's ABC station in Dallas/Fort Worth, teamed up with Rachel's Challenge late last year. The station airs regular feature stories on area schools that have adopted the Rachel's Challenge program. The spots highlight the impact the program of kindness and anti-bullying has had in area schools.
"The response from area schools has been remarkable so far,” said Michael Valentine, WFAA's VP/News.