MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — May is mental health awareness month, and the Mobile County Public School System has launched a new initiative to help those who may be struggling, or just need a little laugh.
The school system launched a new hotline, called “RUOK?” which features inspirational messages from some of their students. Several students from Griggs Elementary and Leinkauf Elementary hope to be a light for anyone who needs them.
“We teach our kids to treat each other kindly. So this worked perfectly with what we’re trying to do here at Leinkauf,” said Hope Belle-Payne.
The communications department worked with some of their junior reporters to record several messages for people who may be going through a tough time.
“They’ve had a tough year the past two years. Our teachers have had a hard time, parents, and everyone involved. Being able to connect with them on a different level, and to bring some positivity was just the perfect opportunity right now,” said Asha Staples, with the communications department with MCPSS.
“I just want to treat others the way I want to be treated,” said Xavier Thompson, a 5th-grade student at Leinkauf. Thompson said he wanted to be part of the project to help lift people’s spirits.
“It does feel good to be doing this because you know I don’t want people feeling bad. I want them feeling positive, said Belle-Payne. “Knock out those negative thoughts.”
Once you dial the hotline, you’ll be greeted with a prompt to select what type of message you’re looking for if you’re sad or just need a laugh.
“I wanted to hear the voices of all the kids, it warms your heart to hear students talking and being encouraging to others,” said Belle-Payne. “When I heard my kids’ voices, it took me to a whole other level.”
The number for the hotline is 251-221-RUOK or 251-221-7865.