Suicide is a major public health crisis and continues to affect more and
more individuals each year. It is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States killing more than 44,000 people
every year. Locally, one in three individuals has been impacted by suicide
and the effects often linger across generations because of the unwillingness
to communicate after an attempt or death.
In order to raise awareness and break the silence of suicide, Good Samaritan’s
Samaritan Center will be hosting a Suicide Prevention Walk on Saturday,
September 9 from 9 to 11 a.m at Gregg Park in Vincennes, Indiana. The
event takes place the day before World Suicide Prevention Day and the
goal is to “Be the Change” and increase awareness about this
preventable cause of death. “We want to continue to connect people
so that hope can be created amongst those affected by suicide and so that
lives can actually be saved from our community’s efforts,”
said Andrea Cole, Executive Director of Primary Care and Behavioral Health
at Good Samaritan. “This event will be a great way to continue our
community-wide journey around suicide awareness and prevention.”
The event will start with a bead gathering ceremony that will be followed
by emotional, personal stories detailing the occurrence and impact of
suicide. An optional one-lap walk will take place and a balloon dedication
will close the ceremony.
As a hospital-based community mental health center, the Samaritan Center
is taking the lead on suicide prevention and asking for the entire community
to assist in the journey. “Our goals are to help prevent
suicide through public
awareness and education, reduce the stigma that is felt by many and then show the
community the resources that exist for those touched by
suicide. We want everyone to continue to be the change that will lead to the betterment of our community,” said Cole.
Everyone is welcome to attend the free event and show your support. Community
members can help spread the word about suicide prevention by participating
in the walk or donating to the Samaritan Center Foundation to help individuals
in need and/or help with expanding the suicide prevention program. Individuals
can also show their support and purchase a t-shirt by contacting the Samaritan
Center at 812-886-6800. Shirts will also be on sale the day of the walk.