Hope Squad Banner

Tri-County Mental Health Services is proud to partner with North Kansas City School District to bring Hope Squad to Kansas City’s Northland. We are thrilled for this opportunity and are excited to expand Hope Squads to other K-12 schools in the area. To learn more or to sign up your school to be a part of the Hope Squad program, please contact Tri-County Hope Squad representative, Sherri Miller at sherrim@tri-countymhs.org.

What is Hope Squad?

Hope Squad is a peer-to-peer, evidence-based program that works within a school to reduce the stigma around mental health and suicide. Hope Squad members are K-12 students who are trained to identify fellow students who are at-risk of suicide and then provide friendship and help from an adult. The Hope Squad program contains curriculum that uses the QPR techniques (Question, Persuade and Refer — 3 simple steps any person can learn to help save a life from suicide), emphasizes suicide prevention fundamentals, self-care and anti-bullying practices. The purpose of the curriculum is to create a common knowledge and understanding within the school community and does not replace the role of school counselors.

Mission and Vision

Hope Squad’s goal is to prevent youth suicide though public awareness and education, reduce stigma, and serve as a resource to those touched by suicide. The vision of Hope Squad is to have a squad in every school to support this mission.

History and Growth

Since its founding in 2004, Hope Squad’s has expanded into 33 states and one Canadian province. In 2020, Hope Squad expanded into more than 200 schools and seven states, all while battling the effects of COVID-19 which shut down schools throughout the world. In 2021, Hope Squad intends to continue support for current schools and further expand. North Kansas City School District is the first district in the Kansas City Metro area to implement Hope Squad in the fall of 2021 with additional KC area schools set to join in 2022.

About the Founder

Dr Hudnall

Dr. Gregory A. Hudnall is a former high school principal and associate superintendent with the Provo City School District. He has been involved with suicide prevention for the past twenty-five years.

For more than fifteen years Dr. Hudnall has led a state-wide volunteer suicide crisis team that has responded to over fifty youth suicides. He has presented at more than 100 national and state conferences on suicide, bullying, connectedness, community collaboration, and making schools a safe place for students.

Dr. Hudnall is considered one of the leading experts in community and school-based suicide prevention, intervention and postvention. He lives by the mantra, “while it takes a village to raise a child, it takes an entire community to save one.”