Hope Squad FAQ

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What is the Hope Squad Program?

  • Hope Squad is a school-based peer-to-peer, suicide prevention program for students.

  • Hope Squad members are students nominated by peers as trustworthy classmates and are trained to identify at-risk students, provide friendship and seek help from an adult.

  • A detailed curriculum guides education from fourth grade through college levels.

  • The Hope Squad program builds in a data and evaluation plan so that schools can monitor outcomes.

  • Through monthly training, curriculum is delivered by Hope Squad advisors to the Hope Squad members. Curriculum includes modules on suicide prevention, and other relevant modules, based on the grade level.

What are the goals of Hope Squad?

  • Improve mental health education while reducing the stigma.

  • Reach students in need quickly and intentionally.

  • Normalize help-seeking for emotional distress.

  • Facilitate access to care, allowing students to get the right help at the right time.

  • Educate and engage parents in suicide prevention programming.

  • Provide connection and belongingness between Hope Squad members and their peers in distress.

  • Enhance school culture as a community of support for students. 

  • Reduce and eliminate suicide.

Why Hope Squad?

  • Since the inception of Hope Squads 45,000 people have been trained.

  • Recent data analysis shows that over 25% of all referrals to counselors in schools with Hope Squads have been from members.  Of those, 14% of students were hospitalized. 

  • Hope Squad focuses on training and intentional outreach to students in distress.

  • Hope Squads have shown the effectiveness of the training modules in pre and post evaluations over the course of several years.

  • Hope Squad students receive monthly training over the duration of the entire school year, and have shown that they retain this training knowledge and put it to practice, while improving their self-efficacy as helpers.

  • Counselors in schools with Hope Squads show that over a quarter of all referrals come from Hope Squad members.

  • Students who might have otherwise been missed are getting the help that they need.