Grade 12 Ladysmith Secondary School student Bobby Rice presents a cheque to Elizabeth Newcombe

Grade 12 Ladysmith Secondary School student Bobby Rice presents a cheque to Elizabeth Newcombe

Ladysmith students raise money for suicide prevention

Students at Ladysmith Secondary School donated money to the Vancouver Island Crisis Society during Pink Shirt Day.

Students at Ladysmith Secondary School made a donation to the Vancouver Island Crisis Society the focal point of their Pink Shirt Day event Feb. 27.

Immersed in a sea of pink-clad classmates and teachers, Grade 12 LSS student Bobby Rice presented Elizabeth Newcombe, executive director of VICS, with a cheque for $225 to help fund the society’s GRASP program.

Newcombe said the school’s donation would fund “another workshop in suicide prevention in either this direct school or another school in School District 68.”

GRASP — an acronym derived from the program’s goal of facilitating Growth, Resiliency, Acknowledgment, Suicide awareness and Preparation and planning — is “a 12-hour gatekeeper program,” Newcombe said. The program is designed to help students identify at-risk peers and guide them to help.

GRASP workshops provide students with an opportunity to learn about themselves, to gain insight into their own biases and to explore means of building empathy and developing coping skills, Newcombe added.

“They’re challenged to discuss those things,” Newcombe said. “The program is structured but yet it’s very flexible to go where the students want the discussion to go. We obviously talk about suicide in that [suicide] is an option that’s not a healthy one. We want people to look at other options because [suicide’s] a pretty final option. We don’t want people to go there. Every life matters.”

GRASP provides training to youth from grades nine through 12 through workshops funded by the United Way, BC Gaming and public donations, Newcombe said.

Moira Dolen is an aboriginal support teacher at LSS. Dolen works with First Nations youth through the school’s Aboriginal Education program and helped organize the fundraiser, a student-run hot dog sale.

The fundraiser and Pink Shirt Day were intended to remind students that there are people in the community students can turn to when faced with a crisis, Dolen said.

Regarding the benefits provided to students who attend GRASP workshops, Dolen said they “become the ears and the eyes of the school. If they see someone in need or someone that wants a little extra help then they can be that referral. They’ll know what to say, who to refer [someone to] and what that process would look like.”

LSS Principal Dave Street said the school’s fundraiser was a “response to the recent support given to LSS by VICS.” 
For more information on GRASP, click here.

Just Posted

(File photo)
Poverty reduction survey identifies 10 poverty themes

Poverty reduction plan will be finalized in July 2021

Nanaimo-Ladysmith MP Paul Manly says he has no intentions of leaving the Green Party. (House of Commons image)
Island Green MPs have “no intention” of leaving the party after ‘heartbreaking’ departure

Manly, May only remaining Green MPs after Jenica Atwin left for the Liberals over internal disputes

New COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island by local health area for the week of May 30-June 5. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control image)
COVID-19 cases drop again almost everywhere on Vancouver Island

Nanaimo had four new cases last week, down from 22 the week before

Justine Keefer’s Cedar Elementary School Grade 6/7 class put together a student paper, as part of a school project. Pictured here Andrew Gregory, left, Felix Leduc, Addison Armstrong, Lucia Walker and Anise Dick. (Karl Yu/News Bulletin)
Cedar Elementary School students create their own newspaper

Grade 6/7 class publishes Wolf Pack News as part of language arts and social studies

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Highway notices like this come down effective June 14. Public health restrictions on non-essential travel and commercial operation have hit local businesses in every corner of B.C. (B.C. government)
Province-wide travel back on in B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan

Gathering changes include up to 50 people for outdoor events

Calgary Stampeders’ Jerome Messam leaps over a tackle during second half CFL western semifinal football action in Calgary, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2015.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
CFL football will be played this summer in Canada

Governors vote unanimously in favour to start the ‘21 campaign on Aug. 5

Citizenship Minister Marco Mendicino holds a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, Nov. 12, 2020. The federal government is announcing that Indigenous people can now apply to reclaim their names on passports and other government documents. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous people can now reclaim traditional names on their passports and other ID

Announcement applies to all individuals of First Nations, Inuit and Métis background

Harvesting hay in the Fraser Valley. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
COVID-19: B.C. waives farm income requirement for a second year

Property owners don’t need minimum income for 2022 taxes

A view of the outside of St. Andrews Roman Catholic Cathedral on Victoria’s Blanshard Street. (Don Denton/News staff)
Vancouver Island bishop apologizes for church’s role in residential schools

Bishop Gary Gordon of the Diocese of Victoria voices commitment to healing and reconciliation

Cruise ship passengers arrive at Juneau, Alaska in 2018. Cruise lines have begun booking passengers for trips from Seattle to Alaska as early as this July, bypassing B.C. ports that are not allowed to have visitors until March 2022 under a Canadian COVID-19 restrictions. (Michael Penn/Juneau Empire)
B.C. doesn’t depend on U.S. law to attract cruise ships, Horgan says

Provinces to get update next week on Canada’s border closure

This undated photo provided by Girl Scouts of New Mexico Trails shows a scout donating cookies to firefighters in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, as part of the Hometown Heroes program. As the coronavirus pandemic wore into the spring selling season, many Girl Scout troops nixed their traditional cookie booths for safety reasons. That resulted in millions of boxes of unsold cookies. (Girl Scouts of New Mexico Trails via AP)
Thinner Mints: Girl Scouts have millions of unsold cookies

Since majority of cookies are sold in-person, pandemic made the shortfall expected

Most Read