While the conversation about mental health is growing in today’s world, suicide can still be a tough topic to handle. Unfortunately, the statistics don’t lie – the suicide rate for students is rising. In today’s stressful world, it is not unusual to become stressed and severely depressed, and it can be difficult for people to know how to manage these emotions. With that in mind, the counselors decided to create Hope Squad, a group whose goal would be to promote suicide prevention and be an ear for anyone struggling.
“Hope Squad’s mission is to train groups of students at the school in order to recognize the warning signs of suicide or depression,” senior and Hope Squad member, Connor Terry said. “This year, we plan to accomplish this overarching goal through creating a safe place for students to discuss serious problems with their peers and faculty, thus lessening the stigma behind discussing suicide or depression.”
To achieve this goal, Hope Squad creates flyers, makes public service announcements, and develop mental health plans for teachers to discuss with students. They coordinate programs with the student council and even arrange for therapeutic services like therapy dogs.
“Hope Squad helped me become informed about depression and mental illnesses,” sophomore Ellie Johnson said. “I feel more aware of the people in my life now and what they are feeling.”
Through these and other endeavors, Hope Squad’s goal is to make mental health issues a public topic. They hope to destigmatize mental health issues and provide students with the resources to address their concerns.
“Hope Squad’s mission is to provide information about mental health,” senior Peyton Clark said. “We want to assist those with depression and help people heal.”