What is Sources of Strength?
Sources of Strength is a peer leadership program where peer leaders and adult advisors are trained to design and share Hope, Help, and Strength-based messages with other youth in the community. The program aims to prevent suicide, bullying, and substance use by promoting help seeking behaviors and developing relationships with trusted adults.
November Campaign - Thankfulness Challenge
Did you know that studies have shown practicing gratitude can change the physical makeup of our brains, making us more positive and content?
This month, we challenge you to write down 3 things you are thankful for everyday for 21 days. Join us in participating in #ThankfulThursday to spread messages of gratitude on social media.
Joining the Team
Why become a Sources of Strength Peer Leader?
- Build leadership skills, interpersonal skills, and student connections
- Use your voice, and social influence to prevent suicide
- Learn how you can be a mental health advocate in the community
How does Sources of Strength work?
- Creates an interactive peer leadership program that influences positive social change
- Empowers students to create networks of connection and resiliency
- Increases help-seeking behaviors
- Promotes positive connections between peer leaders and adults
What is the time commitment to participate?
- Students selected for the program participate in a mandatory kickoff training on October 14th (3 hours)
- Bimonthly 1-hour meetings will be held from October 2020 – May 2021 on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of each month
Want to learn more? Read about the pilot year of Sources of Strength below:
In October 2019, the Howard County Health Department recruited over 50 high school students in Howard County to become Peer Leaders & advocates for mental health. The Sources of Strength program launched in November 2019. Peer Leaders & Adult Advisors participated in several hours of training in order to learn how to appropriately spread messages of hope in the community.
The first Sources of Strength class graduated in June 2020. Over the course of the first year, 44 students representing 12 Howard County high schools participated in one or more meeting. These monthly meetings (virtual starting in April) included strength-building activities that focused on reducing stigma, developing empathy, reaching out to others, and sharing stories of strength and hope. Congratulations to the first class of graduates and thanks to all the adult volunteers who participated.
Follow us on social media to see what students are doing in the community!
Student interns also continued the Teen Health Matters Podcast to talk about Sources of Strength, mental health initiatives, & other related topics! Click here to listen!
Since launching Sources of Strength in November, Peer Leaders & Adult Advisors have been implementing a social media campaign called I Am Stronger.
This campaign allows participants & Howard County residents to become familiar with Sources of Strength & to see how others use their strengths!