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Counselors create Suicide Prevention Week to bring awareness and prevention to campus

MacArthur counselors brought suicide awareness to campus in hopes of warning students about this dangerous issue.

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Counselors Mrs. Laurie Tristan and Ms. Christine Silva hosted a week-long suicide prevention event.  Suicide Prevention Week lasted from September 24 to the 28 and spread awareness about this serious threat to students on campus.  It was held in the quad, P.A.R., and the new Tiger’s Den during lunch.

Tristan hopes that the students are enlightened by the activities and that they realize suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.  “I’m hoping the kids think it’s (suicide) a bad thing,” Tristan said.

The first day, students wrote hopeful notes and placed them on the “tree of hope,” which helped spread awareness.  The second day was board game day, where students could go into the P.A.R. to play board games and meet new people.  The third day was a scavenger hunt, the fourth a video in the PAR, and the fifth day they had a photo booth.

“Suicide Prevention Week helps explain to the students why suicide is not a great decision in any situation,” Tristan said.  “Suicide is a long-term solution for a short-term problem.”

The counselors chose the quad for many of the activities, so every student who walked passed could see the events and still pick up the message.  They chose the Tiger’s Den for some of the other activities so students recognize this new location as a resource.  The Tiger’s Den is located in room 4, which was previously a teacher workroom.  

Tristan said, “I hope the students that participated in the Suicide Prevention Week found a new friend.”

This year, about 200 students participated each day.  This means that about half of the school opted to engage in some, or all, of the activities.  

Eighth-grader Heidi Nguyen thinks suicide has been a greater problem than ever.  She said, “Each and every year families lose loved ones.”

Tristan said, “I hope that students think that suicide is a negative solution, not a positive one.”

The counselors also posted about the Suicide Prevention Week on social media.  Tristan also hopes that the student’s learned that suicide is not a tool to solve problems.

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Counselors create Suicide Prevention Week to bring awareness and prevention to campus