WHS administration and staff are concerned not only with the academic success of our students, but also with the social-emotional wellbeing of our students. In an effort to be as proactive as possible, we are announcing a new service available to WHS students called Text-a-Tip. Text-a-Tip (http://www.leadingefforts.org/text-a-tip/) is a text-communication app that is completely anonymous, operating 24 hours per day, 7 days a week. The system provides text-message service to a dedicated number, allowing the caller to receive an immediate response from a licensed mental health professional in complete anonymity.
Text-A-Tip was developed by a Lake Forest not-for-profit organization called LEAD (Linking Efforts Against Drugs). Texts to Text-A-Tip are completely untraceable, as the system uses a unique ID for McHenry County and routes messages, in real time, to their respondents using a cloaking server. Students can text the word MCHELP, McHenry County’s unique ID, to the 6-digit number 274637 and receive both a prompt response and immediate help from a licensed mental health professional without the fear of being identified or judged. To ensure proper receipt of text messages to Text A Tip, please type the code MCHELP -plus a message - to 274637. See the example below. If a caller is in need of additional assistance beyond Text-a-Tip and shares his or her contact information, the health professional will then notify appropriate high school personnel and/or contact a local health professional or crisis center. Calls for help may be made for personal concerns or on behalf of a friend.
Today’s teenagers use their cell phones for just about everything from keeping in touch with their friends to finding out what is due in algebra class. Text-A-Tip is a confidential, easily available medium for teens to gain immediate help for either themselves or their friends who are struggling with drug/alcohol abuse, bullying, depression, unstable family life, etc.
We are hopeful that this service will give our students an additional medium for seeking help should it be required. High school years are exciting and filled with dreams and goals for the future. WHS administration and staff would like to prepare all of our students for the future they envision; Text-A-Tip is a proactive tool that can help students take charge of their lives and make that future a reality.