The first meeting since October for the HOPE Squad of Carbon, Emery and Grand Counties was opened with Vice President Amanda McIntosh giving a warm, virtual welcome to all in attendance.
In February, the HOPE Squad visited schools in all three counties to speak with the mental health counselors and social workers, giving them a big shout out for what they have done for the community. McIntosh stated that the long-term effects of the COVID-19 pandemic would be on mental health and they wished to ensure that the counselors and school staff knew they were appreciated.
McIntosh then spoke on the Community Youth HOPE Squad meeting that was hosted earlier in May. She stated they were given permission by the city of Castle Dale to partner with the Castle Dale Fire Department. McIntosh credited this as a huge step as it has been a struggle to get suicide prevention training in schools.
With that in mind, McIntosh said getting the youth together is extremely important and she hopes that Carbon County sees the interest and participation and wants to do something similar as well.
Focus was then turned to future plans, with McIntosh stating that they would like to do a small community walk in September as it is Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month. She then opened the virtual floor for thoughts and ideas to possibly incorporate. Ideas such as poetry reads, art contests and fundraisers were discussed.
Continuing, the idea was brought up to possibly reinstate the Postvention Committee. The HOPE Squad has partnered with Fausett Mortuary and Mitchell Funeral Home and has left them with HOPE Squad compassion items. McIntosh stated that she feels that when a family member loses somebody to suicide, they are often interested in the HOPE Squad and possibly joining it.
The meeting was closed after more brief discussion and it was stated that the third quarter meeting time is to be determined.