– Special to RIVERVIEW REGISTER
The 2019-2020 school year marked a reckoning for mental health awareness. Giving the students a voice, a group within Riverview Community High School was created to emphasize the importance behind mental health and let students know that they are not alone in their struggles.
Project Awareness’s mission is to educate students, staff and the community on mental health in an effort to eliminate the stigma surrounding it through strength rather than silence.
To kickstart the group’s first year, members organized Suicide Prevention Week during Sept. 16-20.. Project Awareness sold merchandise, offered a pledge for students to commit to helping prevent suicide, stating that the student will non-judgmentally help those struggling, and the “What’s Your Color?” activity. The “What’s Your Color?” activity allowed students and staff to wear different color beaded necklaces to recognize their support for those struggling with mental illnesses.
For October, Project Awareness participated in the Out of the Darkness Suicide Prevention Walk held at Lake Erie Metropark and for November, Project Awareness and Diversity Club did a mental health presentation at Seitz Middle School for what is known as Unity Day.
Raising awareness for mental health starts with overcoming the stigma, for which the students at Riverview Community High School are determined to do through their monthly activities.