Support Network

It is easier to ask for help and also support students and friends when you are clear about who can offer support and how. Having a plan in mind means one less thing to stress about when we need help. This process makes us more resilient because we are able to receive help more quickly by acknowledging people who are truly helpful.

Step One: People Who Can Help

Make two columns on a sheet of paper - "WHO" and "WHAT". The "WHO" column is for all the people in your life – at home, school or work, in your community. The "WHAT" column is for the ways that they offer support.


  • Did you include people in different age ranges, both older and younger than you/your student?
  • Did you include people related to you/your student as well as people other than relatives?
  • How easy is it to get a hold of these people? How close are they physically & virtually? How quickly do they respond?


  • What types of support can they offer – e.g. emotional, monetary, physical protection? help with homework, running errands, getting a ride somewhere, making appointments for things?
  • What will the support look or sound like? – e.g., a friend who likes to do something distracting and fun together; someone who can talk it out on phone/video chat?

Step One: cont'd

Write down your list of people and how they can support you. Consider the questions above.



Principal Samson


phone calls 24hrs a day
she never shames me for crying

safe to share what’s going on with my family; always thoughtful and works with me


Step Two: External Coping Strategies

What do you or your friends usually do to feel better? Does exercise help? Do you doodle? Do you have a pet? What is comforting and/or energizing about this activity? Try to think of activities or strategies that are mentally or physically active; we know that video games, TV, or Social Media can offer escape or entertainment, but let's challenge ourselves to think of other tools we use to help ourselves.

Step Three: Internal Coping Strategies

What does your inner voice tell you that leads to healthy and safe decisions? Whose voice is it? Do you take a breath and count to 10?