The HOPE Squad is a peer support team whose goals are to provide service and support to students and the community, to prevent youth suicide and suicidal behaviors, and to improve access and availability of appropriate prevention services for vulnerable youth groups and high-risk individuals.
A student on the HOPE Squad is nominated by his or her peers as someone with naturally good listening skills, and as a generally easy person to talk to. They are seen as someone students would trust to go and talk to during a difficult time. These students are trained to be a supportive listener, and to refer the students in need to an adult helper.
DaVinci Academy is committed to providing students with a safe and caring environment. Youth suicide is one of the leading causes of death for adolescents in Utah. Research suggests that programs like the HOPE Squad can increase the likelihood that at-risk students will get help from school counselors. Students who are potentially at risk for suicidal behaviors are more likely to confide in and feel comfortable with peers rather than adults. The HOPE Squad provides a link between at-risk students and adult helpers.