When we started discussing topics to write about for our first issue of “Inside Summit Academy,” I was clueless as to a story I could tell that other people needed to hear. It turns out that story was right under my nose, or should I say on my wrist. It was the hashtag on my bracelet; #BU. #BU (Pronounced "Be You") is a new, Christian movement dedicated to anti-bullying and suicide awareness. It was started in 2019 by Vikki Ruiz, who had a calling on her life to start the #BU movement.
It all started when Mrs. Ruiz became overwhelmed with friends and families who were divided by something as simple as their political opinion. She knew she wanted to make an all- inclusive movement that included everyone regardless of race, religion, or political standpoint. That’s when she started #BU. She immediately got to work making a website, bracelets, t-shirt, and lining up events for us to spread the word.
Mrs. Ruiz said she’s never had such a challenge trying to get #BU off the ground. She said “I have never had so many challenges as trying to start something that involves being about God and a Christian. It has been the hardest thing that I have ever done.”
To help spread her hashtag, Mrs.Ruiz teamed up with her home church’s youth group Restoration Student Ministries. When asked about what motivated her to get RSM on board with the Mrs. Ruiz revealed that it was RSM’s youth pastor, Tyler Ellis, who wanted to get on board with the cause. Mrs. Ruiz knew RSM would be working with her on #BU but she wasn’t quite sure how to put it all together. Pastor Ellis came to Mrs. Ruiz with a plan and the rest of RSM agreed to back the movement
Mrs. Ruiz has big plans for the future she says, “Our movement has grown since we started #BU. We’re at the bulling phase of our movement. In the future I see help for people having thoughts of suicide through our Crazy Christians ministry”
As someone who has dealt with mental illness myself and has friends who have dealt with the effect of mental illness, bullying, and suicide, this movement is extremely important and close to my heart. If you are struggling with suicide, the National Suicide Hotline is 1-800-273-8255. If you are uncomfortable with calling, there’s also a texting crisis hotline, 741-741 and they are not just for suicide, they are willing and able to get you from a hot moment to a cool moment. If you’d like to learn more about #BU, you can visit crazychristians.co or you can come to RSM at 1250 Tom Miller rd. Bethlehem GA on Wednesday nights at 7:00 to talk to Mrs. Ruiz yourself. If you have any questions about #BU I am more than happy to answer them. If you need help dealing with mental illness or suicide, please talk to a trusted adult or trained professional.