The March arrival of COVID-19 changed education delivery overnight, but a MANS high school student and MANS’ guidance counsellor were quick to recognize the importance of combatting isolation and keeping the school community connected.
Juliette Rain, now in Grade 11, initiated a closed Facebook page for MANS staff and students to check in with each other. “She accomplished something that none of us could have done,” said Principal Gail Wilton: As a student, Juliette drew in her peers—an important part of keeping up spirits and motivation to finish classwork while many families struggled with internet and computer availability.
Guidance counselor Kelly Stickle, inspired by a conversation with a Samson Community Wellness counselor, launched a MANS Counseling page on Facebook, and opened it to any young person in the Maskwacis community. The Samson band supported the effort with gift cards for youth who participated in the sessions.
“The counseling page just blew up,” said Stickle. The counseling page got so much attention in the community that the Samson band also started a counseling page as well.