Out of the Darkness Walk raises awareness for suicide prevention


Naina Srivastava, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Community members walked laps around the track to raise awareness for suicide prevention at the Out of the Darkness Walk on Friday.

The event, hosted by Ambassadors in partnership with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, featured guest speakers, performances from the orchestra, and a variety of booths belonging to mental health and teen community service organizations. It ended with a lantern lighting ceremony that was designed to symbolize “walking into the light” even as the sun set, according to Ambassadors member and junior Radhika Kamran.

The walk also served as the culmination of a weeklong series of activities for Mental Health Awareness Week. Throughout the week, Ambassadors hosted lunchtime activities, including coloring murals and watercolor paintings. They also held a mental health panel on Wednesday. 

“Overall, the planning process of that was a lot but there are so many more Ambassadors this year than last year so we had a lot of amazing ideas and we got to do some more activities that we hadn’t done in previous years,” said Avery Olmstead, junior, event-co-lead, and Ambassadors member.

The planning process began in December with work from the mental health committees of both Ambassadors classes, Olmstead said. She said that over 50 Ambassadors helped set up for the walk on the day of.

“It’s always really amazing being there and visually seeing the community members come in support of mental health,” Kamran said.

Olmstead said that seeing students — from both MVHS and Los Altos High School — family members, and community organizations participate in the walk was rewarding.

“It’s just so great to see how the community is involved and then also how many students put in the effort and time to be able to help to make it all possible,” Olmstead said.