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Mobile area children ask “R-U-O-K?”


May is mental health awareness month in Alabama. A new help line from the Mobile County Public School System that may offer hope one phone call at a time…

“You are a good friend. Always stay positive. You better turn that frown upside down….”

Students from W.C. Griggs Elementary School and Leinkauf Elementary School are the voices of hope people hear at the R-U-O-K helpful. R.J. Dock is one of those students who hopes his message helps lift spirits and shares hope.

“Umm…I felt happy because I could just say something that could lift them up,” Dock observed.

Callers can dial up and listen to words of encouragement from students at two local schools. Leinkopf Elementary is participating. Assistant principal Kim Rice says the students are learning their words of encouragement can even help adults.

“They were so very excited to participate in it,” said Rice. “And especially excited when they heard it had launched and people were calling it. They’ve very proud of themselves, and we’re proud of them as well for leaving their mark on the world.”

Callers to the help line can hear specific kinds of messages or encouragement or just recordings of children laughing. The number is 251-221-RUOK.

Lynn Oldshue is a reporter for Alabama Public Radio.
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