This Saturday the co-founders of the Friend Movement will take their message to the streets as they walk from Chicago to New York City to honor those who have lost their lives as a result of bullying.
The journey from Chicago to New York City is long — 921 miles, to be exact — but co-founders Ronnie Kroell and Elliot London aren’t making the trip alone. The Tyler Clementi Foundation, GLSEN, and GLAAD have partnered with Friend Movement for the walk. By the end of the journey, Kroell and London hope to raise $19,420 through an Indiegogo campaign to produce a Friend Movement Walk.
The co-founders will launch the trip on October 5th with a kick-off celebration in Chicago. The journey will end 37 days later with a candlelight vigil in New York City on the George Washington Bridge. Along the way, Kroell and London will speak at schools and community centers about bullying prevention and friendship. They will also leave purple ribbons along the route to honor those who have lost their lives because of bullying.
For the Friend Movement co-founders, the walk is also a way to remember Tyler Clementi, the Rutgers student who, after a cyberbullying attack, took his own life by jumping off of the George Washington Bridge. The two men were inspired by Clementi to start the anti-bullying movement, but London is quick to say that although Tyler was a “young gay man ... bullying does not discriminate. It affects people of all races, ages, religions, genders, sexualities, socio-economic backgrounds and more.” Over the past few months, celebs like Adam Lambert, Darren Criss, and Aubrey O’Day have joined the movement to shift the conversation from anti-bullying to “pro-friendship.”