Last year, we introduced you to then 5-year-old Leanna, a die-hard superhero fan whose kindergarten classmates would tease her, saying “Superheroes are for boys!”, whenever she wore her beloved superhero apparel to school. So her awesome big sister, Adalina, then 7 years old, swooped in to the rescue by declaring October 1st as “Wear Your Superheroes Day” to lift Leanna’s spirits. The idea took off, and the dynamic sister duo is back to do it all over again, officially cementing their super heroic day as an annual, global tradition.
When Adalina first set out on her loving, sisterly mission, her message was clear and simple… “Superheroes are for EVERYONE!” So her plan was to get EVERYONE – boys and girls – to wear their favorite superhero shirts or outfits on October 1st and stand in solidarity with Leanna.
Thinking her concept could have legs beyond just the girls’ school, Adalina’s proud parents, Tom and Mindy, decided to get the word out to a larger audience by setting up a Facebook event page. And that’s when the power of social media took over. News spread, the hashtag #WearYourSuperheroes was created, and like that, Adalina’s local, grassroots event was transformed into a global movement with more than 1,800 participants from the U.S. and 7 other countries including Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Germany, Spain, and the UK.
Adalina and Leanna in October 2014
Now 8 and 6, Adalina and Leanna, both still BIG fans of Batman among countless other superheroes, are reviving their special day this year, hoping to get even more people on board, showing the world that superheroes are for everyone, regardless of age or gender.
Tom shared with WYSK that last year’s event was “really effective in helping to improve Leanna’s confidence.” So much so that he told us, “Adalina doesn’t seem to have the same level of concern about Leanna that she had last year.” It also had a profound ripple effect beyond just their immediate family. “We’ve heard from parents of other kids who have been encouraged by our daughters’ story and by the many photos and messages that were shared.”
While Leanna still sometimes hears that her superhero clothing is for boys, it doesn’t happen nearly as often as it used to. “When it does happen, she doesn’t seem to get very upset.” Tom added, “And it’s been a long time since I’ve seen her conceal her clothing or avoid wearing something because of what a classmate said or might say.”