David Braganini / Photo courtesy of the Braganini Family

Thanks to the Braganini family, be nice.® is coming to Kalamazoo and Van Buren counties.

be nice. is a school-based mental health awareness, bullying and suicide prevention initiative focused on school-wide change through simple, daily actions. be nice. uses the "nice" acronym — notice they are hurting, invite them to get assistance, challenge and empower them — to minimize and reduce devastating effects of bullying like depression and suicide.

Recently established in memory of the late president of St. Julian Winery, the David Braganini be nice. Memorial Fund of the Kalamazoo Community Foundation will provide matching dollars to school districts in Kalamazoo and Van Buren counties that wish to offer this curriculum provided by the Mental Health Foundation of West Michigan.

Says Kalamazoo Community Foundation Donor Relations Officer Coby Chalmers, "While working with the Braganinis to establish this fund, I came to a deep appreciation of the breadth of this matter."

Chalmers adds, "It is gratifying to work with donors who are creating a positive and proactive effort designed to educate students, staff and families about depression, hopefully drastically reducing incidence of suicide for years to come."

Says John Braganini, David’s brother, "I found my way to the be nice. program when I made a decision to find a way to impact our family and the community in some way that would matter in the future."

The Braganini family hopes that by sharing their story and spreading this campaign, it may change the course of someone’s life.

This is the fifth fund created for be nice. at a West Michigan community foundation. The other funds are held at Grand Rapids Community Foundation, Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area, Community Foundation for Muskegon County and Community Foundation for Oceana County.


*On the next screen enter the amount you'd like to give, then choose Another Community Foundation fund from the Designation drop-down menu and follow the onscreen instructions.

July 12, 2017