Suicide is a major healthcare issue, as it is the second leading cause of death for youth ages 10 to 24 today. September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and so it is important to acknowledge mental health, suicide, and finding help during this time- like spreading the news about KnowResolve’s 5k that raises money for suicide awareness, prevention, and mental health support. Or talking about the new number for the Suicide and Crisis Outline, 988, that anyone can call at any given time. Calling this number allows the caller to receive help from an operator whenever they need it.
The Coalition Teen Counsel is a club in Dakota that focuses on mental health awareness and drug use prevention. Each year, CTC helps KnowResolve, a suicide prevention organization, host their “Be Aware 5k”. KnowResolve’s goal is to break down the silence, shame and stigma surrounding mental health disorders and provide adults and youth with tools needed to prevent suicide. Their flyer reads “Please join us on this 5k walk/run to help raise funds and awareness for youth suicide prevention. Proceeds raised through this event support awareness and prevention programs offered locally through KnowResolve and the Chippewa Valley Coalition for Youth and Families”. This 5k is open to all, and it is located right here at Dakota Highschool on October 15th.
You or anyone interested can register today at www.BeAware5k.com . All are welcome to join and get in on this great cause.
Here’s a quote from the Co-President, Madison Singer: “If mental health awareness or suicide prevention interest you or touch you to any extent, please consider joining the Coalition Teen Counsel”.
We also interviewed Dakota student and other Co-President of the Coalition Teen Council, Mackenzie Kohen, and asked what Suicide Prevention awareness means to her. She stated,
“Personally, I think it’s a month of reflection and spreading awareness by sharing our stories. It sheds light on a very depressing and heavy crisis. But I also think that reflecting and spreading awareness should continue throughout the year. I’m one of those people who have unfortunately been impacted by suicide. Like I said previously, it’s a month of reflection and using your experiences to help others.”
We also asked her if she had a message she would like to share with others- here’s what she wants you to know:
“It’s okay to not be okay. I know it’s basic, and a lot of people say it, but it’s true. We put so much pressure on ourselves that we often forget to check in with our own emotions. We may repress them and push them to the side, ignoring how we truly feel. It’s okay to not be okay. It’s ok to feel different emotions. And if you do find yourself in a state of crisis, use the resources you have been given around you. Suicide hotline is now 988. Remember it.”
With that, remember to check in on yourself and the people you love this month, and help to end the stigma surrounding suicide and mental illness.