Electricity is in the air as the students of Springville Junior High are in anticipation for the results of this years Hope Squad. Hope Squad is a club that people vote for, it is initially to talk to people and make them feel better and spread hope to everyone. The students at Springville Junior High vote for their peers to make up the Hope Squad. The students chosen often hold meetings during Quest time, a free period if you don’t have a D or lower. They will be the Hope Squad members until they leave the school if they choose to.
Brynn Ross, a ninth grader at Springville Junior High, said “I think that the purpose of Hope Squad is to prevent suicide.” Audrey Wood, an eighth grader, said that she thought that Hope Squad was to help people through challanges. Paige Ballard, an eighth grader, from last year’s Hope Squad said that the overall purpose for it was to unite people and help people to feel part of the group. They also need to feel welcome and needed she added. “Hope Squad is for people that are struggling or for people who are contemplating suicide,” Ella Kurban, an eighth grader, stated. Ryan Glazier, an eighth grader, from last years Hope Squad replied that it is initially meant to prevent suicide and for people who are feeling lonely.
Just barely at Springville Junior High the students got to vote for students to be their Hope Squad members of this year. When asked what they looked for in the students for Hope Squad many students replied that they want someone nice and someone easy to talk to. Wood said that someone who is listening and cares about you. Ella readily responded saying, “I vote for people who want to be there and who are sensitive and open.”
Paige Ballard explained that being a Hope Squad member meant being “trustworthy, responsible, responsible with how people are feeling, someone wanting to help, and to be the person who helps prevent suicide.”
Monica Distefano, a counselor at Springville Junior, has many things to say about Hope Squad such as, “I think Hope Squad is a great program to have at our school. We’ve been running the program here for about six years. Once students are trained, they know what to keep an eye out for, and the importance of referring students for help.” She later goes on to say that the students have become good at communicating when someone might be in a crisis. On the Hope Squad website it states how Hope Squad is a “peer support team” to help kids their age. Hope Squad also makes it possible for kids that at at risk to get help from the counselors.
Mrs. Distefano later states that last year Hope Squad went up to Shadow Mountain for their training, and that they would meet weekly during advisory. Last year the Hope Squad had a wonderful idea and came up with hope week and with a variety of ideas on how to spread hope. Throughout the week the students planned fun positive activities for the school, and activities that made it so the students were being allies to one another. Through the year the students continued their training to help their peers. Her last remark was that the students did an awesome job with the entire thing.