North Adams is recognizing initiatives for children this month that are designed to raise awareness of childhood cancer and the effects of bullying. reports Mayor Thomas Bernard read two proclamations last Tuesday recognizing September as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and the city's participation in a weeklong program from the Sandy Hook Promise, a gun-violence prevention movement built on the 2012 mass shooting at the Connecticut elementary school.

Go Gold for Kids With Cancer in September is a national effort by the American Childhood Cancer Organization to raise awareness of the effects of cancer on children. Joined by Kathy and Joseph Arabia, Bernard read off some of the statistics for children suffering from cancer. Some 43 children are diagnosed with cancer every day in the United States, and cancer is the leading cause of disease-related death for children.

The North Adams Public Schools will participate in Start with Hello Week from Sept. 24-28. Superintendent Barbara Malkas said it was an opportunity for the entire community to really make an effort to reduce social isolation.

"We have a week of activities planned and we're hoping all of you ... will get involved and join with us," she said.

On Monday, Sept. 24, students will be encouraged to wear green and the schools will begin the program. The high school, for example, will have a photo booth for students to have their photos taken with a Start With Hello message. Tuesday, Sept. 25, is the annual Walk to School Day in the elementary schools and at Drury High School, members of the Student Council will welcome their peers entering the building.

On Wednesday, Sept. 25, will be "nobody eats alone day" with a focus on ensuring no one is isolated during lunchtime. Thursday, Sept. 27, is Compliment Day. Rather than finding something to criticize, students will be encouraged to say something nice.

The school system is also looking for community members to sign up to be at the schools on the morning of Friday,

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