Baldwin High School Deployment

Start Date: 2022-01-18

Description: This deployment was in response to a recent student (11th grade, band member) suicide, which occurred just as a Covid spike hit the community. This was the students' first day of in-person learning since the suicide and we were requested by The Chill Project's leaders to help provide comfort to the still-grieving students and staff. The teams were initially sent to three different locations: the band room, the guidance office and the Chill Room, which is a very zen-like space that students can visit when they are feeling depressed or anxious. Without a team leader, and in a very large building, we requested that school staff touch base with us every 60-90 minutes to provide breaks and allow the teams to rotate throughout the other rooms. This didn't happen exactly as we'd hoped, reinforcing to us the need for a team leader we could rely on to make sure that we weren't overwhelmed. Each of us found a way to give our dogs a break but the day was exhausting. The dogs handled it well, though, and school leadership as well as the counselors voiced their appreciation for our presence.

Agency: Allegheny Health Network, Chill Project
Teams: Dean Williams and Feona; Nancy Chesley and Zoe