Twin Falls High School advocates for mental health through Sources of Strength Program

Twin Falls High School Sources of Strength Program
Published: Nov. 14, 2023 at 1:20 PM MST
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — The Sources of Strength Program at Twin Falls High School focuses on helping students discover their strengths while dealing with stress, anxiety, or depression.

“We originally started as just a small club, our office sees so much traffic with kids that are struggling with mental health, and we just felt like we need so much more. So last year our principal worked with me, and we made it into an advisory program, so now it’s a school wide program,” said Twin Falls High School counselor, Mariah Sorenson.

Each grade level has about 30 kids that meet every day to build relationships and plan ways to help their peers improve their mental health.

“We consider ourselves peer leaders, we create these campaigns and come up with ideas, our last one we did was ‘No One Eats Alone,’ where we get food from Chik-Fil-A, Costco pizza and then we got Jersey Mikes, and it was pretty much for kids who couldn’t get food or don’t have the money for it, so we could all eat together,” said junior Peer Leader, Preston Harmison.

The program is also a source for teens to talk about their problems or just for someone who needs a friend.

“The mission is just to let teenagers know that they are not alone in this world. It’s incredibility isolating to be in a high school and we’re just here to show you that while you might feel like you’re suffering in silence, we are here to bring you out into the light and help you improve your situation,” said senior S.O.S member, Lauren Davis.

The program is a way to bridge students and staff together for more serious mental health concerns.

“I’ve seen our peer leaders act as connectors, so they’ll be the ones they’re willing to talk to then they will connect them to an adult. I’ve actually seen that save several lives. Meaning we would have kids that were suicidal, and they were walked in here by a peer leader,” said Sorenson.

According to peer leaders, many people have signed up for the program because of how impactful it is. For those who want to become a peer leader; as long as you are a student at Twin Falls High, all you have to do is apply. Visit the Twin Falls High School counselor office for more information.