SANTA CLARITA, Calif. – Saugus Strong, words that are not only reminder of strength but unity for the Santa Clarita Community.
“When it first happened I thought, what can I do? I know I can do something,” says Vincent Bird, owner of SCV Decals in the Santa Clarita Valley. He decided to make Saugus Strong Decals the same day as the shooting.
- Santa Clarita Using Blue Lights to Honor Saugus Shooting Victims
- Saugus Students Motivated For Change After School Shooting
- Student Shot at Saugus High Now Home Recovering
Bird grew up in the Santa Clarita Valley and his son attends elementary school near Saugus High School, this is his community and he was devastated by what happened.
“I just wanted to put these decals out so people can come get them for free and kind of just give back in the small way that I can and it wasn’t to make money, it was to give back and people started giving me donations,” said Bird.
Bird donated a majority of that money to The Santa Clarita Coalition an organization that connects Santa Clarita non-profits and is offering help individuals affected by the Saugus Shooting.
A small portion is being used to buy materials since he didn’t expect such a high demand. He has made more than 2,000 decals and has so far donated $3,000 to the Santa Clarita Coalition.
But the decals not only are not helping raise money for non-profits, they’re also helping the community heal. Parents, students, and people who either live in the Santa Clarita community are putting them on their cars, homes and computers anywhere they can be seen.
“When you wear you wear the t-shirt or display the decal you feel connected, you’re part of this community that you’re all going through this together and you’re supported,” says Maureen Donohue, a psychotherapist in Santa Clarita who has worked with trauma patients for more than 27-years.
She says the most important thing is to be able to express your feelings, “because the idea is we want to work through the ideas and the thoughts, we want to express them because we get them out and it’s cathartic and they’re released and that’s the healing process.”
As for Bird, he says “it was just amazing to see this community come together like it did.”
He says he will continue making the decals as his community continues to heal.