By the definition of the word, a bandit is someone who steals things habitually. However, the Post-It Bandit at Communications High School in New Jersey takes nothing.
“The Post-It Bandit is someone, I don’t know who, who puts up sticky notes on everyone’s locker,” said Samantha Bender, a student at CHS.
The name ‘Post-It Bandit’ was first used by CHS alumni, Clay Paley on his Twitter and Instagram in 2015. He posted the title the same day as the first “post-it attack.”
“They had come in early before anyone else, and had put a sticky note on every locker. Every one had a nice message or saying on it to motivate whoever it was for,” Bender said.
Some students were confused at the point of the messages but appreciated them none the less.
Lauren Spiezia remembers the post it notes as a nice welcome. “A couple days after the first day of school of my freshmen year there were notes for everyone and it was a nice welcome. It’s a little way to spread a little bit of happiness and kindness without being so direct.”
Junior Robert Denny shared, “Well I think the post it notes are very motivational especially in the stressful school environment and it helps to brighten the mood of the school. Having the individualized messages help to make it feel personal so it helps to know that someone took the time to do this and their not alone in this with their stress.”
The Post-It Bandit agreed to an interview with Channel Kindness on the condition of anonymity.
“The whole idea of creating a kind message for everyone was inspired by something going on in my own life. A friend of mine had recently attempted suicide and I wanted to overall just spread kindness and happiness in a time that was very sad and void of joy for me.”
This wasn’t an isolated incident. Months later, students walked into a school filled with bright pink, blue, and yellow sticky notes. The messages were as cheery as the colors.
“Every few months, when it feels like everyone at school is in a slump, I like to write the notes to remind everyone that they are special and no matter what, today can be a good day.”
The Bandit wants to make everyday a good day with their Instagram – @thepostitbandit – dedicated to inspiring and hopeful messages, and their followers love it.
“Some days it’s a really simple message like “Smile” but other days there’s messages about being yourself and moving along. Once they had posted a message about how awesome you are, and I was tagged. Honestly, I’d had a rough day at school and dance and the message was something really amazing. It made my day,” said Catherine Escueta, a follower of @thepostitbandit.
“I’m graduating this year, so I chose an underclassman to take my place so the messages don’t stop when I’m gone,” the senior stated in regard to the future of the Post-It Bandit.
When asked what they hope comes from this they said, “I simply hope that I make people smile. If I’ve made even one person smile, then I’ve succeeded.”