Burlington Central High School hosted a special guest speaker recently to mark the national Day of Pink.
Matthew Boger, from the Museum of Tolerance in L.A., spoke to an enthralled auditorium at Burlington Central High School April 15. The presentation helped recognize the Day of Pink, in which students are encouraged to wear pink to take a stand against homophobic bullying.
As part of his speaking tour called From Hate to Hope, Boger told his story about coming out to his mom, being kicked out and forced to live on the streets. While on the streets, he was brutally beaten by a gang who believed they had killed him. He survived and years later met one of the gang members, who was trying to make amends for the wrongs he had committed. Boger talked about the impact of being bullied and how forgiveness can happen.
j Wallace, Halton Gay-Straight-Alliance Facilitator for the Halton District School Board, says Boger experienced “horrific homophobia as a young man, and I hope part of his story for students is a cautionary one. Much of Boger's presentation was a question-and-answer style, and students were encouraged to ask whatever questions they wanted. Many of the students’ questions were very insightful and compassionate as they asked about family and relationships.”
“I hope the students learned how damaging homophobia can be. Students did learn about the value of forgiveness, as well as what they can do to make their school more welcoming and inclusive.”
The presentation is tied into the Grade 7-10 health and physical education curriculum about relationships, identities and inclusion, as well as Grade 10 civics and human rights.
You can read more about Matthew Boger on the Museum of Tolerance at: http://www.museumoftolerance.com/site/c.tmL6KfNVLtH/b.4866123/