When Kathy Axe heard about Buddy Benches in use at a California school, she decided to bring the concept to Toledo Public Schools.

She made an offer to principals that the students who are part of the Construction Academy at Rogers High School would make the benches for $10 apiece and she was overwhelmed at the response.

Longfellow Elementary staff members raised enough money to buy five of the benches for the playground and an assembly was held on Wednesday, October 28, to mark their delivery.

In addition to the Rogers students, students in Start High School'sTeen P.E.P. (Peers Education Peers) group were on hand to kick off the assembly with skits about bullying and positive intervention strategies since October is National Bullying Prevention Month.

Longfellow Principal Yolanda Johnson said of the teens, "We are so grateful for their contributions."

Marissa Appel, Longfellow counselor, said the Buddy Benches will be used for students who don't have anyone to play with at recess.  A student will sit on the bench and other students will see this and offer for him or her to join their group.

Ms. Appel said, "Our hope is these benches will eliminate playground loneliness, foster friendship and create new circles of friends!"

Posted on October 28, 2015