I’M JUST ME BECAUSE MONTH
I’m Just Me Because Month in October invites all people to express their individuality …Our motto is “Be Yourself!”
The entire month of October focuses on promoting individual development, creating environments that break down stereotypes, and embracing who we really are. By doing so, we also recognize the diversity around us, and we move beyond simple tolerance to celebrate humanity. Our movement starts by giving voice to the things that make us unique and outstanding and recognizing that acceptance helps change the culture.
The I’m Just Me Movement reminds us the concept of diversity encompasses acceptance and respect. It means understanding that each individual is unique and recognizing our individual differences. These can be along the dimensions of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs, political beliefs, or other ideologies. Understanding diversity is the exploration of these differences in a safe, positive, and nurturing environment. It is about understanding each other and embracing and celebrating the rich variety contained within us.
Expressing who we are also goes a long way to improving and maintaining mental wellness. When we are confident in our voice and uniqueness, we share those qualities with others. We build upon a foundation that we can fall back on in times of crisis. Our mental wellness overcomes many obstacles life throws at us. October and I’m Just Me Because Month provides an opportunity to grow and experience understanding in ways we never have before and build resilience.
HOW TO OBSERVE
During I’m Just Me Because Month, we can express our strengths, talents, and achievements. Some may choose to define themselves by their challenges or appearance; others emphasize their inner beauty or unique features. I’m Just Me Because Month provides endless conversations starters from hair color to where a person was born. But we don’t have to be defined only by our circumstances, mistakes, or by address. Remember, identify the connection of the world’s greatest you, and be THAT! As Tina says, “Live life forward.”
Express the ways that make you the unique individual you are throughout October. Celebrate the person that is like no other and be you! Use the #ImJustMeBecause and tell us why by posting on social media.
The I’m Just Me Movement grew from the experiences of the Culbreath family, who in 2013 created a fundraiser to help with costs of post-graduation support for their son, Rze Culbreath. Rze had just graduated, and his mother, about the same time, had been diagnosed with Stage 3 Breast Cancer. Their son’s dream to attend college, despite his challenges, was remarkable. Tina Stevens-Culbreath and Rodney Culbreath, SR created a fundraiser and called it the I’m Just Me Movement. The funding would impact their son in ways they didn’t expect, and life would take unexpected turns like life often does. They learned about their community, their neighbors, their son, and each other.
Through 2014, they continued outreach of inclusion; in November 2015, the I’m Just Me Movement became a non-profit organization with a mission of spreading awareness and breaking down stereotypes. Rze’s parents, Tina and Rodney, felt inspired by their son and the community to continue their efforts to impact individuals.
In November 2016, the organization founded I’m Just Me Because Month in hopes of reaching people on a national level. They also hoped to encourage celebrating the rich scopes of diversity contained within each individual through acceptance and respect for one another. The Registrar at National Day Calendar proclaimed I’m Just Me Because Month to be observed annually in October.
About I’m Just Me Movement
Today, through their organization, founders Rze Culbreath, Rodney Culbreath SR, Zach Harrell, Christine Stevens-Culbreath play a positive role in young lives every day. With great team members, they provide their Live Life Forward Initiative workshops, mentoring, presentations, and many more programs. Their programs are available through a variety of venues, including schools, businesses, and events. I’m Just Me Movement advocates and raises awareness about inclusion, diversity, bullying, and self-esteem issues. Through their mission, they positively impact youth/communities and guide, teach, train, and mentor them to a better future.
Our Approach to Help Stop Bullying! We believe the solution to ending the cycle of bullying requires nurturing people to be who they are and help them build self-esteem as well! People are less likely to cut others down and be more compassionate when they feel good about themselves. The bully is part of the solution!