Team Paws Stands Up to Bullying with Free2Luv

Find out how one third grade class promotes kindness and aims to prevent bullying every day.

These third graders along with their caring teacher are changing the everyday dialogue to focus on positivity and eliminate bullying inside this Michigan classroom. Known as Team Paws, this inspirational group is getting high marks for their mission to stop bullying one day at a time.

Here is what their teacher said.

I explained to the kids that I was excited to begin our day because our Free2Luv swag had arrived. It was the perfect opportunity for us to recite the kindness pledge and make a promise to each other and ourselves to be good friends, use our words for good, to take a stand against bullying, and to not be a bystander if bullying was happening.

Every morning we begin our day with a class meeting which involves reciting positive self-affirmations. That’s because one of our classroom rules is we only say kind words to ourselves, even the words we say inside our brains, because self-love matters.

These affirmations go like this; I am kind, I am a good friend, people like me, my teacher loves me, I love me, I matter, I am smart, I’m good at math, I do my best, and so on.

With this, I request the kids to set a daily goal before they return to their seats to start their morning work. That goal might be to sit by someone who’s alone at lunch, to give a compliment to someone, or smile at someone in the hallway.

This has made a difference in our classroom climate. I have made it my goal to create a classroom climate that focuses on the importance of social and emotional learning. My kids are learning how to manage their emotions, rather than how to cope with them.

It’s my goal for all my kids to feel safe, seen, heard, and celebrated every day.

I can do this because I know my kids. My kids are different and unique from each other, but there is something about every one of them that I love and admire.

When Free2Luv reached out to me to participate in their initiative, I knew it was perfect for Team Paws. During a discussion one of my kids made a great point; he said he was happy to take this pledge because as a member of Team Paws, he believes he and his classmates have grown in kindness this past school year. Continuing, he said we hardly ever argue, and we care about each other. Team Paws changed the way he feels about kindness in general.

The kids wanted to talk about the importance of being a good friend and standing up for victims of bullying. It was their idea to create posters to hang around the school and on our classroom door to educate the other kids in the school.

Want to join Team Paws? Take Free2Luv’s kindness pledge and be an advocate for kindness. Change begins with each of us.

Team Paws Stands Up to Bullying with Free2Luv 2018-03-05T23:43:26+00:00

Bullied to Brave … The Story of Youth Empowerment Nonprofit Free2Luv

Have you ever had a life-defining moment? Mine came in 2011 with the sudden passing of my young mother from pancreatic cancer. I was faced with how short life can be and questioned whether I was fulfilling my life purpose. I kept hearing about youth feeling like they had nowhere to turn, hurting themselves, and even taking their own lives. My dream I had acquired at a very young age of being an advocate for youth, resurfaced.

With my mother’s loss of life and young people taking their lives because of not feeling accepted, I felt driven to reach as many young people as possible. Furthermore, to let them know their life matters and is worth living and to empower them to know others’ words or actions don’t define them. I have since made it my life’s mission to help kids feel safe, heard, and valued, regardless of their ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation. I rolled up my sleeves and armed with love, passion, and determination, my family and I founded Free2Luv®. Free2Luv is a youth empowerment nonprofit inspiring hope in youth who are often marginalized, bullied, and afforded little opportunity to thrive and prosper, including LGBTQ youth.

Behind every issue, whether it’s bullying, self-harm or self-loathing, are low self-esteem and a lack of self-love. We wanted our organization name to be a word of empowerment. The name Free2Luv encompasses loving yourself first, loving others and being free to love whoever you desire.

From personal experience, I know the value of having one other person in your corner, fighting your fight with you and supporting you fully. It can be the thing that pulls you out of your circumstance and makes the difference for a prosperous life. Sometimes that difference is between living and dying. Other times it’s standing up for a stranger who you see being bullied instead of turning away in apathy. In addition to using our own voices to impact others, we mentor youth to raise their voices in compassion and love. That’s what truly sets us apart.

One of the cornerstones of our organization and one we are incredibly proud of is our youth advocacy/mentorship program. We assist youth in finding their authentic voice and expression, which in turn builds their self-esteem and confidence. What happens from there is magic. Advocates inspire other youth in their community as they share the importance of bullying prevention, spread kindness, and celebrate individuality. By providing youth continual support, we are growing leaders and game changers who are making a powerful and positive impact in their communities, inspiring, encouraging, and uplifting their peers. It’s a dynamic ripple effect of empowerment and connection.

There’s nothing like holding hands with young people who build confidence and engage in inclusive conversations. When youth learn to express themselves more fully, they share their hearts and are open-minded with their peers. It is the most rewarding and profound work we have done in our lives, and it is a gift to witness the growth of these beautiful individuals who are our future. Teaching leadership, innovation, and compassion is critical to our society’s future. When we raise authentic, confident, and empowered individuals, we are building a strong future for all youth. Therefore, we will continue to make this our life’s work and mission. Above all, we aspire to be leaders who inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more.

Bullied to Brave … The Story of Youth Empowerment Nonprofit Free2Luv 2018-01-29T15:52:33+00:00

Uniting for Good On and Off the Field

We’re super proud to be standing with the Kent Meridian Royals, beautiful young gamechangers, to ROCK LUV and stand up to bullying. This is our 3rd annual bullying prevention campaign with this amazing high school and this year, the Tahoma Bears Cheer and Football team joined forces to unite for GOOD on and off the field, showing true sportsmanship. And the good doesn’t stop here – they’ve brought kindness to the campus where they’re having conversations, participating in the Free2BeME art project, and fundraising to spread more LUV. Together, we are stronger.

Uniting for Good On and Off the Field 2018-02-22T21:11:25+00:00

What do you #StandFirm for?

We have an awesome way to give back to kids suffering from bullying while standing firm for what you believe in!  We’re in.  Are you?  We want to know what YOU stand firm for!  Simply snap a pic or create a short video letting the world know what you STAND FIRM for.

Here’s how …

We’re super excited to be partnering with Algenist, an award-winning skincare brand, for the #StandFirm campaign.   The mantra is in perfect alignment with our mission:

We believe in unwavering principles.
Only you dictate what you believe in – own it.
Stay strong in your values, #StandFirm for your beliefs.

Algenist is offering customers 10% off with a 10% donation to Free2Luv® with the purchase of Elevate Advanced Lift Contouring Cream at from May 15 through May 30 with promo code FREE2LUV.

PRINT your SIGN HERE and we’ll see you on social ➽ #STANDFIRM SIGN

What do you #StandFirm for? 2018-02-22T21:13:10+00:00

Musician Maddy Vance Writes Anti-bullying Anthem for Free2Luv

With over 50 songs under her belt, meet our amazing Youth Advocate, Maddy Vance, 15 year old musician, singer and prolific songwriter.  After experiencing bullying and the feeling of isolation, Maddy wrote ‘Crashing Down’, a beautiful anti-bullying empowerment anthem, and donated the song to Free2LUV and our beautiful community to inspire and empower youth! We’re super proud to be standing with her to make a difference.

Musician Maddy Vance Writes Anti-bullying Anthem for Free2Luv 2018-03-05T17:02:14+00:00