- Cherry Creek School District No. 5
Smoky Hill counselor Elaina Huff honored by Colorado Rapids
Smoky Hill High School Counselor, Elaina Huff, was recognized by the Colorado Rapids on May 18 for her outstanding work in providing mental health support to her students. Last spring, Huff partnered with Project Helping to launch the Kynd Kit program at Smoky Hill.
Kynd Kits are a community service opportunity where students are able to assemble boxes of materials for a particular cause including care packages for seniors, dignity bags for homeless, domestic violence victim support, financial literacy packages, LGBTQ support, teen mental health support and much more. Students can assemble the kits and return them to be sent out to the greater community, or use a kit themselves.
“It's really been beneficial for students in crisis and students that need community service hours. It just really helps students to center themselves and give back because when you do good, you feel good,” said Huff.
As a part of their mental wellness campaign, the Rapids are highlighting community partners across the state who are championing mental health efforts.
Rapids Club Ambassador and former player, Drew Moor, said, “We are recognizing her because she has been instrumental in the mental wellbeing of the students here at Smoky Hill High School and the Rapids love to hear that. Mrs. Huff is a wonderful role model and we really appreciate all that she’s doing for the community.”
Huff displayed the contents of what a teen mental health kit looks like, including a fidget spinner, stress balls, different things to decorate, coloring, friendship bracelet string, and a journal.
“The most rewarding part of my job is seeing students thrive and kind of work through difficulty. They know that they have someone they can come to for support and be able to get back to doing life and being okay,” said Huff.
Principal Bala praised the importance of Huff’s work, “Mental health is essential. If students aren’t okay mentally and their social-emotional health isn't in place then academics are also going to suffer. We value serving the whole child and mental health and social-emotional awareness is huge. Smoky Hill has done a really great job of emphasizing that, specifically Elaina Huff. The attention to detail she has with students around ensuring that they are in the best place they can be to be the best learners they can be is huge. We appreciate Ms. Huff for everything she does.”