The Vashti Center and residents of Thomasville attempt to break a Guinness World Record

Hundreds gathered in downtown Thomasville to attempt to break a Guinness World Record for Children's Mental Health Week.
Published: May. 19, 2022 at 1:49 AM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Breaking records for mental health.

Earlier in the week we told you about the residents and volunteers from the Vashti Center in Thomasville attempting to break the Guinness World Record for “most people dressed like a butterfly.

The current record is 367 people and the attempt will be used to raise awareness for Children’s Mental Health Week which ends May 7th.

Rain or shine the community wanted to be present Friday in downtown Thomasville dressed to impress for a good cause.

Hundreds of people in butterfly costumes is not something you see everyday, but for the Vashti Center it has a special meaning.

“If you think about the transformation that happens with a butterfly we wanna see that with our children as well. You know we want to be side-by-side with them on their healing journey and that’s something that we take very seriously,” explained Vashti Center Executive Director Elijah Miranda. “And so this is just a fun way and a playful way to kind of raise awareness on this important issue.”

Miranda says he wants to make the community aware of mental health issues within the youth.

“The pandemic took a toll on children’s mental health and we’ve seen an increase in referrals and every single county that we serve so we want to make sure that people are aware that these services are important,” shared Miranda.

The event even caught the attention from those who aren’t residents and wanted to be a part of it.

“So we didn’t come in the right attire but we were so committed when we got here that we had to drive to dollar general and buy our outfits,” said participant Olivia Bellamy.

Before the severe weather took it’s toll on the region, 450 people registered for Friday’s Guinness World Record attempt with residents poised to make it happen.

Tennille ross, stepping stones autism academy nurse

“It’s wonderful. They said we had to get 300 and more people so I got my sister, her kids, and we are here to support, said Stepping Stones Autism Academy Nurse Tennille Ross. “I called I could get people here to help make this number larger.”

Ross said that she and the Stepping Stones Autism Academy wanted to show support to their community partner the Vashti Center.

“You know I was always taught at a young age when you help others, others help you. So that’s why we are here,” shared Ross. “When it came on Facebook I sent it to my coworkers and everything I said hey y’all we have to go support Vashti.

Other participants that came said they were happy to support a good cause.

“It makes you feel good because you’re helping other people. Instead of you just being here enjoy yourself you know that you’re helping other people too,” shared Participant Blair Bayliss.

The kind of support the Vashti Center says they truly appreciate.

While they put up a valiant effort, the group was just 32 people short of breaking the Guinness World Record for “most people dressed in butterfly costumes” but they say they’re happy they were able to raise awareness for children’s mental health week.

The Vashti Center says they plan to try this attempt again next year and are confident it will be a success.

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