First lady Melania Trump voyaged to the Detroit suburbs Monday to speak to middle school students and participate in a ‘No One Eats Alone’ anti-bullying event, which the Michigan school was participating in.
‘I encourage you to find a new friend and eat with your new friend,’ the first lady told students at Orchard Lake Middle School in West Bloomfield. ‘Ask them what they like, what their hobbies are so nobody becomes sad or stressed and everybody feels included,’ she instructed.
FLOTUS was there as part of National Bullying Prevention Month and kicked off what the White House is calling the ‘Week of Inclusion,’ with the ‘No One Eats Alone’ event aiming to get students to reach out to their peers to make sure everyone has someone to sit with at lunch.
As she walked around the cafeteria, the first lady noticed how some tables were all boys or all girls, and encouraged the students to branch out, according to the Detroit Free Press.
The trip marked the first lady making good on a campaign trail promise to devote time to curbing bullying, though her timing could be mocked, as her husband spent Monday morning swiping back at a Gold Star widow after she went on ABC’s Good Morning America and told George Stephanopoulos that President Trump couldn’t remember her late husband’s name.
Melania Trump, who has defended her husband attacking those who have criticized him – warning that he will punch back harder – told students in the lunch room, ‘I think it’s important that we choose kindness and compassion.’
She was greeted with hugs and selfie requests, alongside Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.
The two women also visited the sixth grade classroom of teacher Susie Aisner, who runs a twice-weekly ‘Viking Huddle’ program, where students focus on ‘social emotional learning,’ the White House said.
‘I always believe that you need to treat each other with respect and kindness and compassion, but also stay true to yourself,’ Melania Trump said. ‘Just listen to your heart, but be yourself.’
Last October, with just weeks to go in the campaign, Melania Trump spoke at an athletic facility in the suburbs of Philadelphia vowing to take on cyberbullying if she were to become first lady.
‘As adults, many of us are able to handle mean words – even lies. Children and teenagers can be fragile,’ the future first lady said. ‘They hurt when they are made fun of or made to feel less in looks or intelligence. This makes their life hard and forces them to hide and retreat.’
‘Our culture has gotten too mean and too rough especially to children and to teenagers,’ Melania Trump added.