Sarah Rasse, 14, from left, Cole Guseman, 15, Josh Simon, 16, Rodney Vandom, 18, Kailynne Clifford, 15, Dylan Coleman, 16, and Hannah Brockmoller, 17 pose for a portrait about their mental health awareness video that was named best by Safe2Tell Wyoming.

Addressing mental health is an important topic for a group of Thunder Basin High School students.

“It is a really big issue I’ve seen with kids my age,” said Hannah Brockmoller, a senior journalism student.

She also directed a student video about teens and mental health.

“I think that not a lot of people know how to deal with it and it kind of hits close to home for me because Josh (Simon) in the video is taking on everyone else’s burden and I think that a lot of people here do that because they want to help everyone else before they help themselves,” Brockmoller said. “It’s important to show people you need to help yourself as well as help others.”

The message is getting out, and on Tuesday, Safe2Tell Wyoming and the Campbell County School District recognized Brockmoller and other students for creating the award-winning Safe2Tell video focusing on mental health.

A year ago, Campbell County High School seniors Tiffani Reed and Raylee Bachtold won the award, making this the second straight year a Gillette student project has been selected.

Brockmoller directed and edited a 2-minute mental health video in the fall with the help of classmates Cole Guseman, Dylan Coleman, Kailynne Clifford, Simon, Sarah Rasse and Rodney Vandom. In the film, they use wristbands with keywords such as “disappointment” and “past relationships” to show the various problems students may face and that it’s OK to acknowledge a problem.

“I think it is an issue that is addressed but people don’t take seriously,” Brockmoller said about mental health. “I’m hoping that this video will kind of open people’s eyes that maybe they should take their mental health seriously if they need help.”

Safe2Tell Wyoming tasked students with creating a video that addressed one of three themes and a marketing plan for it. Each team was judged on its creativity, how clear the message is, its marketing plan and overall editing quality.

“I’m very, very proud of her,” said Claire Carter, TBHS journalism teacher said of Brockmoller and the team. “When I saw their work I knew they would win because they worked so hard on it and I was completely thrilled. They strived for perfection.

“This was hard to do because to make it interesting we often tend to go toward humor and there is nothing funny about this topic, of course, so it really challenged them to push for creativity.”

Brockmoller surveyed a group of students at school do see if they know what Safe2Tell was and only one of six do.

“It was kind of surprising that a lot of people didn’t know what it was,” she said. “I think it’s a very good resource to have and it is important for people to know what we can use.”

In 2019, suicide threats was the No. 1 tip reported with self-harm rounding out the top five, said Samantha Kanish, Safe2Tell spokeswoman.

“Mental health continues to be our top reported tip and it is important for students to talk about mental health and to reach out to a trusted adult when they feel overwhelmed,” she said.

Safe2Tell is “an anonymous report network for people you’re worried about” and it is also a way to report on issues like bullying or school threats, Simon said.

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