Her message to others was to be kind and show compassion but it wasn't until her death that her message was spread around the world.
It was nearly 14 years ago on a warm spring day when Rachel Scott sat outside of Columbine High School having lunch with a friend. Two classmates approached Scott and shot and killed her then made their way into the school where they proceeded to kill 11 other students and one teacher and injure dozens of others before taking their own lives.
After Scott's death her family read her journals and also came across an essay she turned in for a class assignment titled “My Ethics, My Code of Life.” In the essay she wrote, “I have this theory that if one person will go out their way to show compassion, then it will start a chain reaction of the same. People will never know how far a little kindness can go.”
Since then her family has been going to schools, colleges and corporations all over the world sharing Rachel's message. Rachel's Challenge has a mission to inspire, equip and empower people to create a positive culture in their schools and work places by starting a chain reaction of kindness and compassion.
That message was shared with high school students at Discovery Canyon Campus on Jan. 25. Presenter Mike Walker shared Scott's story and how she wanted to start a chain reaction. She went out of her way to be kind to special needs kids, the new kids at school and kids who were typically bullied.
During the assembly at DCC Walker gave the students five challenges. He told the students to look for the best in others, dream big, choose positive influences in their lives, speak with kindness and start their own chain reaction.
“She would like you to challenge yourself as she challenged herself,” Walker said.
Since starting Rachel's Challenge the Scott family has received more than 500 emails from students that said they were considering suicide but after seeing Rachel's Challenge they reached out for help. Approximately 78 percent of students surveyed said they would intervene if someone was being bullied after seeing Rachel's Challenge.
Scott's message has definitely had an impact on students worldwide. More than 18 million people have been impacted by Scott. In one of her journals she traced her hands and wrote inside the hands, “These hands belong to Rachel Joy Scott and will someday touch millions of people's hearts.”
For more information on Rachel's Challenge visit www.rachelschallenge.org.