After a successful morning of birdwatching (finding the endangered Whooping Crane in mid-Michigan) yesterday, I stopped for lunch in Chelsea, Michigan on the way home.
Walking down Main Street, a flutter of color caught my attention.
I looked around the corner of the 19th century red brick building to discover an incredible art installation.
In the 10-foot space between the two downtown buildings were what looked like rows and rows of clotheslines, strung with colorful flags.
I had discovered the Why You Matter campaign.
Why You Matter
Launched in 2017 after the loss of three students from Chelsea High School, the Why You Matter campaign was started by teachers and students to help students deal with their own grief as well as focus on their own self-worth.
In 2017, each student and teacher was photographed holding their answer to the question “Why Do You Matter?”
Over 950 photos were hung around the school.
For the second year of the campaign, the question asked was
What is Your Why?
Each student was given a small white cloth, a flag, to describe their personal purpose with words and art.
Hung in the style of Tibetan Prayer Flags—which promote peace, compassion, and strength—the small flags are hung in two corridors on Main Street, carrying the messages and voices of the students across the community and world.
Have you seen the Why You Matter? flags in Chelsea, Michigan?