BATAVIA, OH (Aug. 30, 2019) — County Commissioners this week approved about $20,000 in funding from Clermont County Family and Children First (FCF) for suicide prevention services for five school districts.
- Milford High School – 9th Grade Community: $1,500 to support Ending the Silence Day (50-minute prevention and early intervention presentation by The National Alliance on Mental IIllness-NAMI that engages students in discussion about mental health) and $500 to support Hope Squad’s Hope Week (school-based peer-to-peer suicide prevention program for students to improve mental health education, reduce stigma, reach students quickly, normalize help-seeking, educate and engage parents in suicide prevention programs). Will impact 542 students.
- West Clermont Middle and High Schools: $1,903.60 to support Hope Squad training/supplies and $3,670 to support WEB/Link Crew activities. WEB (Where Everyone Belongs) is a program to support the transition to sixth grade. Eighth-grade students are trained as mentors/student leaders to support and guide sixth graders to discover what it takes to be successful during the transition. Student leaders are also trained to look for bullying behaviors and report it. Link Crew focuses on the transition to ninth grade. Juniors and seniors are trained to be Link Crew leaders/mentors. Students make real connections with each other which increases school safety and reduces the incident of bullying through anti-bullying education. Will impact 2,000-plus students in high school and 1,400-plus in middle school.
- Williamsburg High School (9th grade): $1,000 to support Freshman Kick Off Day — a day filled with fun learning activities to welcome students to the ninth grade, teach appropriate expectations, help students to reconnect with peers after summer, and help students feel positive about coming back to school. Will impact 93 students.
- Goshen Middle and High Schools: $9,500 to support Hope Squad. Impact not available.
- Miami Valley Christian Academy (9-12 grades): $2,000 to support Hope Squad. The academy received partial funding to implement the Hope Squad program as MVCA has almost 50 percent of their students coming from Clermont County. Will impact 140 students.
Besides the suicide prevention activities that FCF supports, the Clermont County Mental Health & Recovery Board supports other suicide prevention programs through its funds and through ENGAGE 2.0 funding. Also, the Milford-Miami Township Drug Free Coalition is supporting suicide prevention activities in Milford. They have worked together to ensure resources don’t overlap.
FCF has funded suicide prevention program for many years. Initially, FCF funded schools to implement the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, as it’s known that bullying can lead to suicide. Then, FCF switched to the schools asking for funding for specific programs that they would like to implement.
The Clermont County Family and Children First Council was established in the mid-nineties in response to Section 121.37 of the Ohio Revised Code. Clermont County FCFC is comprised of government agencies, community stakeholders and parents, committed to improving the well-being of children and families through the strategic coordination of resources. Councils are designed to draw people out of their day-to-day systems to align resources and activities around a shared vision for Ohio’s families and children to thrive and succeed.
FCF receives state and federal funds for some programs, but most of its funds come from local contributions – from MHRB, Juvenile Court, JFS/CPS, BCC, Public Health, Clermont Recovery Center/GCBHS and Board of Developmental Disabilities. All of the funds that FCFC uses to support suicide prevention programs are local monies.