PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — St. Lucie County commissioners declared October as "STOMP Out Bullying" month at Tuesday's commission meeting.
Bringing awareness to the seriousness of bullying in schools, commissioners recognized one local boy, allowing him to tell his story and help children who are being bullied feel less alone.
Luca Moore, 8, said he is among the many kids who face bullying.
He said he has been bullied since kindergarten.
"I just cried myself to sleep about being bullied," Luca said. "I asked them to stop, but they wouldn't stop. In first grade, this kid said that he was going to kill me and my whole family."
He often kept his experiences to himself, he said.
But last Christmas, he wrote a letter to Santa Claus that broke his family's heart. They shared it with a county commissioner.
"Dear Santa, you probably know that I'm being bullied since you know when I'm sleeping and when I'm awake," Luca read to commissioners.
His letter asked for Santa to give him something that would make the bullying stop.
Commissioners and community members at the meeting applauded a speech he wrote, telling his experiences with being bullied.
"I think that deputies at school should actively go to the playground at recess and check if kids are being bullied," Luca said in his speech.
He said teachers often could not do much to help.
Getting the recognition Tuesday was important for Luca.
"I just can't put it into words," he said. "It was amazing."
Most of all, he hopes to help other children feel encouraged and supported.
"I hope that they feel like they're not alone," he said. "It's OK if they're getting bullied. Just ignore the bullies."