Operation Live

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Operation Live

Aiden Foley, Journalist

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A picture Diana Fittje made with a quote from Cinderella

Aiden Foley
A poster Diana Fittje made with a quote from Cinderella

Motivational Poster

Lisa Gray
Diana Fittje’s posters motivate students and staff to value life and human kindness.

Many students have those moments when they feel isolated, lost, detached or plainly alone. Lately though, all around school there have been posters popping up everywhere. Some are inspirational quotes, some are little pit stops to remind you that everything will be okay; some people really need them. But that begs the question, who made them?
For Diana Fittje, the creator, these posters have a deep importance. “I had a friend die by suicide in September and it was a way for me to sort of grieve. I was hoping since I felt like I couldn’t help him I could maybe help somebody else.”
There has been  a positive impact on students and teachers alike. Senior Mason Snyder said, “They make me feel appreciated and that people are actually doing something for us.” Encouragement can come in a variety of forms, but to see it every day is a reminder that human beings have worth and they make a difference.
When asked why they thought Diana put the posters up, the answers were very interesting. Sophomore Robin Holden said, “Because we have a very high suicide rate (in Wyoming) and it (seeing a poster) makes you feel not alone.”  Snyder said, “To raise awareness towards kindness and self-worth.”
Fittje has seen the impact the posters have made and that encouraged her to continue putting up posters. “I’ve seen people looking at them and I’ve heard things from teachers. They say that students go up to them and say; ‘Hey, I was having a bad day but I saw one of those signs and they helped’ and that’s really comforting to me and reassuring that this is actually doing something.”
From a psychological point of view is it possible that seeing these posters often enough could change someone’s way of thinking? Holden said, “If you’re upset then it’s nice to read that stuff and they make you feel better but if you’re not then you don’t really notice them.” Snyder said, “Psychologically yes, because the more you see something, the more your brain acknowledges the posters.”
For Fittje, deciding to make the posters was a spur of the moment decision and she’s been making them ever since. “I spent about a week working on them right after he died and I started putting them up about a week later. I probably had about fifty posters put up the first week.” She tries to put up new ones everyday, but school sometimes get in the way of that.
Do the students think they should keep them up? Both Holden and Snyder said yes. So far, all of the posters have stayed up, and they don’t seem to be going anywhere soon.