Hope Squad Forms at High School Level

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Courtesy Photo

Hope Squad members pose for a photo.

Abigail Morris, Staff Writer

Following the start of Hope Squad groups in middle schools last year, the district launched groups at the high school level. The suicide prevention club meets every Wednesday during advisory under the supervision of sponsors Diana Guerrero and Michelle Springs. The members want to grow their numbers and will plan outreach events for next school year. 

“Hope Squad is a group made up of students working alongside advisors to help prevent suicide,” Ms. Guerrero said. “Our goal is to reduce youth suicide through education, training, and peer intervention.”

Hope Squad began this spring and currently has 22 members. Hope Squad recruited students through a selection process.

All members were students that were nominated by the student body as trusted friends/peers,” Ms. Guerrero said. “These are students that are described as kind, easy to talk to, and don’t bully.”

Junior Kassidy Kaluf joined Hope Squad at the beginning of the semester and helped plan Hope Week, where students could participate in dress-up days or visit their lunch table. 

I am super glad that I get to be a part of it,” Kaluf said. “I think it’s important that if a student is struggling, they have people they can reach out to, and I am very grateful that I get to help with that.” 

Sophomore Keslynn Smith helped run the Hope Squad table on the Wednesday of Hope Week. They created two posters, one for students to write their struggles, and another with affirmations for those students to take with them. 

People came up to our table and we explained to them what Hope Squad was, and then they were able to write what they were stressed about on a sticky note and put it on the board,” Smith said. “Then they were able to take an affirmation with them to help them feel a little better.”

Although Hope Squad’s main goals revolve around suicide awareness and prevention, it also helps improve the lives of its members. 

“I think as a high school student, [being a part of Hope Squad] will build my character,” Smith said. “I think it will also help me get to know people and get to know what they’re going through because sometimes I focus on myself a little bit too much.”