A quick reminder to school and community members of the upcoming suicide prevention training, January 19. You can find information and registration at www.tooelecity.org.
In support of our community, TCSD secondary schools are also working to increase suicide awareness. One way schools are doing this is through Hope Squads, a peer-to-peer training program from Hope4Utah. The following is a brief summary of Hope Squads:
HOPE Squads are the eyes and ears of your school. They are comprised of students who are trained to watch for at-risk students–provide friendship, identify warning signs, and seek help from adults. HOPE4UTAH works with school advisors to train students who have been identified by their classmates as trustworthy peers to serve as HOPE Squad members. Through evidence-based training modules, HOPE Squad members are empowered to seek help and save a life.
HOPE Squad members are NOT taught to act as counselors, but rather, are educated on how to recognize signs of suicide contemplation, and how to properly and respectfully report this to an adult. Once invited to be HOPE Squad members, students willing to go through the training must get a permission form signed by their parents. After completing their training, HOPE Squad members host a parents’ night where they teach their parents and family members about what it means to be a HOPE Squad member.
TEF offers funding for Hope Squads to secondary schools through the Partners in Prevention grant. This funding provides schools with the means to build Hope Squads, plan activities to increase suicide awareness, and teach students to “Ask a Question, Save a Life.”