The NSHS Hope Squad is hosting their first annual Hope Walk on Monday, May 15 beginning at 10:00 a.m. at the school and members are inviting the community to participate in this inaugural event. The Hope Squad is a nationwide club that was started in Utah and is a peer-to-peer suicide prevention program. Members are nominated by their classmates as trustworthy peers and trained by advisors. The program’s goal is to reduce youth suicide through education, training, and peer intervention. “This was our students’ idea to have a mental health awareness walk since May is Mental Health Awareness month,” said Jessica Ivie. “They wanted to have a school wide activity with the intention of spreading positivity and helping every student in the school find a place here.” She said the walk will begin on the bike path near the football field and there will be stations along the path set up by Safe Utah, Central Utah Counseling Center, and Squad members with information and hydration.
“We want to spread awareness around this difficult topic and reduce the stigma of mental illness; we are grateful we can partner with local mental health agencies on this walk and plan to make it an annual event,” said Ivie. “Our focus is on connectedness, anti-bullying, school safety and we hope to increase help-seeking behavior. We encourage the community, everyone who can, to come join us on this walk.”
Rilee Mason, Boston Mason, Kember Johnson, Dax Bastian, Ciarra Anderson, and Dalli Wasden, along with Advisors Jessica Ivie, Tarah Johnson, and JoLynne Kirkwood, are members of the planning committee. Rilee Mason and Kember Johnson serve as co-captains of the Hope Squad and Ciarra Anderson is the Lieutenant.