No one at East Valley High School in Yakima Valley, Wash., knew who was behind the anonymous "It's About You" Instagram account for about a year, but that's exactly what class valedictorian Konner Sauve, 18, wanted.
He began the account last summer to combat the negativity often seen in the world, and high schools in particular, and vowed to flip the script.
"During the summer, I made the decision to go in and try to make everyone here feel appreciated and recognized for simply being the amazing people they are," he wrote in an post with his own "coming clean" picture this week. "It is easy for people to be cruel over social media, so I decided to make an anonymous account on Instagram that would counteract the negativity seen today by posting a picture of each student and a paragraph of what makes them GREAT and how other people should see that too."
So 657 posts, 11 months and three grades later (the classes of 2015, 2016 and part of 2017), he helped his fellow peers feel loved.
He named the account thebenevolentone3 and made the profile image a peace sign, and that was no accident.
"Benevolence being defined as 'characterized or expressing goodwill or kindly feelings.' In the end, I realized that we are ALL the benevolent ones in our way and actions of how we treat others, it has been a wonderful year,' " he wrote.
His captions to his fellow classmates put that benevolence to the test.
Juan Flores The appreciation of everyone around you shows how amazing of a man you are. They appreciate you because you're always there and don't give up on your friends or family. You've learned from your mistakes and when to step up to the plate. You have successfully gone through trials and obstacles to get where you are today. Just live like you were meant to and life will forever keep growing around you.
I love your last name, it is one of a kind and that is cool!! You have a certain sense of style and fashion that really speaks that you are UNIQUE. Be outspoken about your passions and boast of how wonderful people are because in doing so you will find that tried and true friends will emerge to make new friendships and relationships with you. Keep being amazing.
Islam Alsarama You are beautiful. Do you hear this often? Because you definitely should. You are literally such a unique beauty and you distinguish yourself from other girls your age. You are a courageous woman in the making and being proud of who you are and having confidence will carry you through high school and defy those who try to tear down your spirits. You will be just fine because trust me, YOU have a sense of soul about you that people know will always be loving in nature towards others. Good things come to those who are good to others and that is JUST the type of person YOU ARE. You go. You go. You go girl.
Sauve hopes that the tradition will continue after he is gone: 'I wish that the next generations take over and find bolder ways to express positivity and encouragement in the East Valley Community. Keep on keeping on.'
Now, we have one for you Konner Sauve:
You're an incredible student and friend. Your kindness tells us that you're going to go far in this world and help others in more ways than you've imagined.