The Hope Squad of Carbon and Emery Counties hosted its annual Hope Festival at the Notre Dame Hope Center in Price on Friday evening. The hope festival is a winter community event hosted to show support for suicide prevention within the community.
Santa was at the festival to give out gifts while the Boys and Girls Club of Carbon County provided free games and prizes for kids.The traditional bingo game and chili dinner were also a big hit.
The festival and all that it entailed was made possible by donations of all kinds and many volunteer hands. The Hope Squad wishes to thank the community for participating and showing their support in addition to thanking those who came to offer help.
“We indeed may have saved a life; hope matters,” said health educator Debbie Marvadikis.
In addition to fun, free activities, the Hope Squad strives to educate the public through various classes. According to Marvadikis, the squad has trained over 1,200 people in the community in QPR (question, persuade, refer). The training teaches people how to help prevent suicide until an individual can get professional help.
“It’s like CPR, you are just there until professional help gets there,” Marvadikis said. “You don’t have to be a counselor to save someone’s life, you just have to care.”
Those interested in learning more about the Hope Squad or attending a QPR class may call (435) 637-3671. If a suicide attempt seems imminent, call a local crisis center, dial 911 or take the person to an emergency room. Remove guns, drugs, knives and other potentially lethal objects from the vicinity, but do not, under any circumstances, leave a suicidal person alone.