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Students decorate restroom stalls, sending uplifting messages

Posted at 8:38 AM, Oct 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-15 19:07:38-04

ORO VALLEY, Ariz. — A team of National Honor Society students at Ironwood Ridge High School decorated its female restroom stalls. NHS saw this as a way to uplift students and to spread suicide prevention awareness.

As many students tend to see restrooms as a place of escape, NHS leadership thought the stalls were the perfect place to spread positivity.

"Even if it's still was a space where people kind of come to escape and be with themselves, that at least they were coming to a place that has positive sayings and reminded them that they were beautiful and that they were a part of this place and to not think negatively about themselves. Because we just felt like that was something we wanted to change at our school," said Sydney Andresen, the NHS Treasurer.

After raising funds for supplies, the leadership encouraged their organization along with some faculty members and parents to come together and decorate three restrooms in one day.

"We did it all in one day just so it would be a big surprise and it would be just a big burst of positivity for everyone. And personally, I was at school for about nine hours and we had about 50 volunteers," said Lauren Stevenson, the NHS historian.

"But it was a very long day of printing all the stuff out, getting them on transfer paper, sticking them up on the walls themselves. It was just like a long day but it was worth it," said Andresen.

The stalls and mirrors have positive messages and symbols; and on the backs of the stalls, hotline phone numbers.

"Its easy to take your phone out and snap a picture or to add that number to your contacts," said Andresen.

"And even if you truly are struggling, there are, I think, six or seven phone numbers on there so you have that reminder that you're never truly alone. And then with all of the quotes and with all of the decorations in here, it can just help spread the happiness," said Stevenson.

The ladies said this was phase one. Very soon they said they will decorate more restrooms throughout the high school, including the male restrooms, hoping to get all of them done by the end of the school year.

NHS is accepting donations to help make their restroom transformations possible. Contact Ironwood Ridge High School to make a donation to NHS.