TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) – A new year often starts with a new goal and this year, News 18’s goal was to dedicate an entire year to caring for kids in our community with our “Eye on Kids” segments.
WLFI-TV covered many topics including education, where we talked about everything from teaching kids to read at a young age to preparing teens for college.
We were there as teens received financial assistance for college, thanks to College Goal Sunday.
“Usually it’s kind of a sense of relief that they’re done with the process,” said College Goal Sunday chairperson David Reseigh. “Knowing, I think, that they’ve helped their student file something that might help them in terms of giving them financial aid for college is often a relief.”
Nutrition was also a big topic in 2013. News 18 covered the initiatives that help combat hunger among kids, like the Backpack Food program.
It’s a need Food Finder’s Executive Director Katy Bunder said continues to grow.
“We have backpack programs in Tippecanoe County in every elementary school,” said Bunder. “That’s 3,375 backpacks per week.”
While the “Eye on Kids” segment spent a lot of time focusing on the good in our community, we also focused on the tough topics like bullying.
Bullying is an issue Purdue Family Studies Professor Judy Myers-Walls said affects kids not only inside the classroom, but on the internet.
“They need to realize this has implications and in fact often has greater implications because it never goes away and it can be retrieved,” said Myers-Walls. “Once it’s out there, it has a life of its own.”
In order to help combat the issue of bullying within our school corporations, several programs were put on for students.
Those programs included an anti-bullying puppet program and a performance by the band Reverse Order. Reverse Order is an anti-bullying band that focuses on positivity.
News 18 was also putting kids first outside of the classroom. During the summer months, we took a look at the fun and educational activities available to students.
One such activity was Camp WACK, a camp focused on giving students with special needs the opportunity to do things they may normally not be able to do.
“Smiles,” said Camp WACK Co-Founder Amy Gish. “That’s our favorite thing about it, and that’s why we continue to do it every year.”
As the year comes to a close, News 18 wants to thank not only our sponsors, but our community for being a part of the “Eye on Kids” initiative.