On tables inside a multi-purpose room, Valencia High School students worked to lift the spirits of their peers at Saugus High.
Dozens of students wrote the names of all Saugus students and teachers on paper snowflakes to hang on the school’s Legacy Wall.
Overall, 2,800 snowflakes were crafted.
The idea stemmed from another activity involving paper leaves conducted by Valencia’s Associated Student Body following the shooting that occurred at Saugus.
On Nov. 14, 2019, a student gunman armed with a pistol opened fire on the Saugus campus, shooting five peers, killing two before turning the gun on himself. The shockwaves from the incident were felt at campus across Southern California, including the neighboring Valencia High.
“They got paper leaf cutouts and put the name of a (Valencia) student on each one with a positive message on the back,” Valencia senior Ryan Liljedahl said about the previous activity.
Liljedahl noted the positive effect the leaves had on the morale of students, and decided to start the new snowflake project. Each snowflake has a Saugus student’s name on the front and a positive message on the back.
“Here, we are doing the same thing with snowflakes to help spread positivity and continue supporting the Saugus students and staff after the events last November,” said Liljedahl.
Students and staff members of Valencia High met in the MPR on Jan. 8 to begin the project. The snowflakes were hung at Saugus High before their Winter Formal dance.
“Helping people is one of the best and most effective coping mechanisms, so working towards helping Saugus and giving others a chance to do the same has also helped me,” said Liljedahl. “It is inspiring and so humbling to see people come together and help their community.”
Liljedahl thanked the staff members and groups that helped with the project, including Principal Ferry, Mr. Ford, Ms. Nicole Wertz, Ms. Makenna Wertz, Mrs. Bernier, Mrs. Rosenast, Mrs. Ferry, Ms. Des, Valencia ASB (Brooke Friedman and Logan Hubbard), Valencia MSA and Valencia Help for Kids Club (Ayden Reading).