Students at Dempsey Middle School spent their Thursday and Friday recess doing an unusual activity, wrapping hearts in yarn.
The hearts are part of the Peyton Heart Project and will be distributed to participants of tomorrow’s sixth annual Suicide Prevention Walk sponsored by HelpLine, the Delaware-Morrow Mental Health & Recovery Services Board and the Delaware Suicide Prevention Coalition.
The Peyton Heart Project is named after 13-year-old Peyton James, who committed suicide in 2014 after years of being bullied.
Students at Dempsey and other community groups have been wrapping cardboard cutouts of hearts in yarn and attaching positive and inspiration quotes to the tags according to Nick Wright, the coordinator of the project at Dempsey.
Wright said after the walk on Saturday, participants will be encouraged to take the hearts and hang them throughout the city in an effort to bring encouragement to resident’s every day lives.
Wright said students were on course to have created more than 200 hearts by Saturday.
The walk will be held Sept. 10 at 9 a.m. in Bicentennial Park in Delaware. Organizers report the event will be family friendly and the walk will feature tables from local and national agencies dedicated to the well being of the community, as well as activity tables and ways to honor lost loved ones.
According to organizers, before the 1-mile walk through downtown Delaware, speakers will inspire participants to take action and help those around them who might be struggling with depression and/or suicide and the Community Connectedness Award will be presented.
After the walk, participants will come back to Bicentennial Park to take part in the beloved biodegradable dove balloon release.
Registration for the event will remain open until Friday at 11:59 p.m. Free T-shirts were available for anyone pre-registered before Aug. 24. Additional shirts will be available while supplies and sizes last for anyone pre-registering after that date.
Participants are encouraged to post on social media using the hashtag #Courage2Ask or #PeytonHeartProject. For information, visit www.helplinedelmor.org.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.