By Helen Zeidman
One fifth of teenagers have a mental health disorder, according to the National Center for Children in Poverty.
Aevidum, a new club at Red Lion, is hoping to prevent this statistic from becoming a reality in our community.
The word “aevidum” was made by the student at Cocalico High School when one of their fellow students committed suicide. The word means “I’ve got your back.” A group of students decided to make a positive outcome from the tragedy.
So, they formed Aevidum.
This group of students, including sophomore Mickayla Smith, Juniors Ian Adler and Hayley Athoff, and Senior Katelyn Willey, are determined to bring the program to the high school.
“The club is completely run by students,” sa Ms. Rohrbaugh, teacher advisor for Aevidum. The school psychologist, Mrs. Persing, is also advising the club.
In October, Mrs. Rohrbaugh, invited this group of students to attend the Let’s Talk PA! press conference in Lancaster.
“You could feel the energy bouncing off everywhere,” said Willey.
Over 30 schools attended the conference to start off another year of spreading awareness about mental health issues.
“There were a bunch of people from different schools. Those who were already a part of the club were connecting us as one,” said Smith.
The energetic conference inspired the group of students to bring the excitement back to their school.
“When Mrs. Rohrbaugh told us about the conference, it was really vague,” said Adler. “But when we got there I thought, ‘This is awesome.’”
On Friday, November 12, the kick-off assembly was held in the auditorium.
Willey and her fellow leaders of Aevidum at Red Lion organized the assembly on Friday and will continue to plan most of the club’s events.
The presentation started with Smith and Adler wearing banana suits.. The club’s purpose and future plans were finally revealed.
Aevidum at Red Lion will focus on increasing acceptance, appreciation, acknowledgement, and care in the high school.
The club already has several ideas to accomplish that goal.
According to Willey, the club has their first activity in the works. They plan on hosting Red Lion’s first paint battles. As a fundraiser, white shirts will be sold by the club members. All of the money will go to kick starting the club and extra will go to charities that deal with mental health awareness.
Then, they will organize paint stations and students will paint handprints on each other’s shirts to show that they have each other’s backs.
“We would have paint everywhere,” said Willey.
The club is also planning on creating an Aevidum lounge as a place where students can have a comfortable place to relax and to get help.
These plans are in the works, but the club needs the students’ help. More members are needed to organize events and activities. Anyone who is interested should contact Mrs. Rohrbaugh or Mrs. Persing, the school’s psychologist and co-advisor for Aevidum.
“Everyone is welcome. That’s what makes Aevidum different,” said Athoff.
Follow @aevidum on twitter for updates and different ways to get involved