Gratitude Wall: Hopeful Endeavor by Hope Squad

by Rishi Mallela

President senior Ashton Kendall, sticky notes in one hand, Sharpie in the other, stands beside the wall adjacent to IB Commons- the Gratitude Wall. Vice President senior Kevin Cao holds his phone, reciting out the responses of positive affirmations compiled from the Google form they put out for the students and staff. The rest of the Hope Squad team gets together, smiling at classmates as they pass, some even joining to help, and working together to paste and display the positive messages of gratitude, kindness and confidence across the Hope Squad Gratitude Wall. 

The Hope Squad presented the Gratitude Wall: a wall of optimistic and hopeful comments and quotes to promote positivity. This wall is located next to the IB Commons in Building 1. Kendall says that people can submit their positivity through their comments and additions to the wall. 

“The gratitude wall is a way for people to put up what they’re thankful for,” Kendall said. “It’s to give others an idea of what others are thankful for and uplift them.” 

Getting to know more people with similar intentions of gratitude would spread a sense of community among the people who observe the wall as it grows in size. 

“You can [make a submission] to get the memo out there, where some people will maybe be alike with each other, “ Kendall said. 

The Google form can be accessed through a QR code that is posted in the daily announcements, a poster on the Gratitude Wall and social media. The Hope Squad can be contacted through Instagram at @peshhopesquad and Hope Squad team members can be reached face-to-face in the Hope Squad classroom, B4-201, during second period. The general consensus is that the wall will have a very positive influence.

“I believe the impact will be very positive,” senior TJ May said. “I believe everyone will get uplifted through it.” 

As well as considering the impact the Gratitude Wall will have, students do plan on taking part in these Gratitude Wall submissions. Through selfless resolve, students are getting involved to promote action to help anyone that they can, whenever possible. 

“Yes, I do plan on taking part in it,” May said. “I think it will really help me affect more people’s lives and help anyone that I can, as much as possible.” 

As more and more students look forward to getting involved, the Hope Squad prepares to share these notes as more responses come in, so adding to it as soon as possible can spread more positivity within and outside the hallway corridors. Posting additions to the wall, the outlook on gratitude’s impact shared by the students and Gratitude Wall organizers also plays a part in the importance of why people should take part in this endeavor. The impact that gratitude spreads is beyond words. It can be a shining light, reinforcer of positivity, and also a way to acknowledge what you are thankful for. For Cao, the impact of gratitude stretches upon being thankful for the resources, environment, relationships and blessings that we are given. 

“Gratitude means being thankful for the things and resources that you have,” Cao said. “It’s really just being thankful for the things that we’re blessed with.” 

It is also characterized by the small gestures and kindness spread to reinforce positivity in a person’s day and life. 

“Personally, I’ve always believed that the small things that a person does like smiling or having kind gestures gives you some kind of positive reinforcement and helps with the negative parts of the day you are going through, ” May said.

Next time you walk across IB Commons, take notice of the wall. In black font it says “GRATITUDE WALL brought to you by Hope Squad.” Rather than taking notice of its general presence, think about the impact a small note of kindness would make on another person who notices it too. 

“For me it’s kind of like a shining light to where if I’m in a darker place it’s that light that I can follow that can lead me to something better,” May said.


Pictured: Hope Squad senior Kevin Cao and sophomore Janvi Sharma put up a poster to promote a message of kindness on the Gratitude Wall Sept. 23