HELENA — For the third year, Shodair Children’s Hospital has partnered with organizations across the state to offer $10,000 in scholarships to raise awareness for National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.
“Youth suicide rates in Montana are nearly double the national average and we want to do all we can to change that,” said Craig Aasved, CEO of Shodair Children’s Hospital. “One first step in suicide prevention and breaking down stigma is creating a safe place for conversations and a platform for young people to share their story. This contest is yet another way we are continuing to meet our mission, to heal, help, and inspire hope with the continued help from our stakeholders.”
The scholarships are open to students from the ages of 13 to 18 that are enrolled in a public school, private school or home school in Montana. Students have until next Monday, September 27 to enter before the deadline closes.
The young Montanans are asked to share their message of hope to others around the state that may be struggling with their mental health and battling suicidal thoughts. This year’s theme for students to respond to is: What impact has the pandemic had on the mental health of youth?
The messages can be written, video, or visual like a drawing.
Shodair Chief Communications Officer Alana Listoe says Shodair staff are always impressed with the quality and thoughtfulness of the entries they have received in the past.
“Young people can really be an example and lead the way for older people as we continue to break down the stigma at this important time where mental health is at an utmost high as far as need goes,” said Listoe.
After the entry process closes at 11:59 p.m. MDT on Monday, September 27, 2021, each submission will be thoroughly reviewed by a panel and judged based on the level of messaging, how impactful the piece is and the project’s creativity.
More information about guidelines for entry and how to submit an entry can be found here.