For this year’s Mental Illness Awareness Week, which started on Saturday, October 6, the Let’s Erase the Stigma (LETS) Club is passing around 1000 blue ribbons to third period classes, wearing LETS shirts and inviting a speaker from the LETS Foundation at Stanford University to speak at the school.
“She’ll be talking about what we can do to help suicide awareness at our school and [Principal Wynne] Satterwhite will be attending the meeting,” LETS Club President junior Sarah Merrick said. “It will be about suicide awareness and this petition we plan on doing, which is a petition for raising suicide awareness at our school if a suicide does occur.”
Additionally, the LETS Club will broadcast over the announcements facts and statistics about how stigma negatively impacts those with mental illnesses.
“We set facts and disprove myths about suicide by sharing these facts about it,” Sarah said. “And we’re bringing in speakers to share facts about that [suicide] as well.”
The purpose behind these activities is to help raise awareness about mental illness and help create a more supportive environment at the school.
“[Our purpose is to] not have stereotypes, not judge people and create an environment where we can talk about mental illnesses,” LETS Club Vice President junior Anica Nangia said. “People generally do not talk about mental illnesses because it’s a sensitive topic. But if we just talk about it, people can be more comfortable and not judged either.”