Suicide takes the lives of over 30,000 Americans each year across the country, and in the St. John Valley a Suicide Prevention walk was held over the weekend in an effort to curb that statistic. One hundred fifty people participated in the walk.
Organizer of the Out of the Darkness Walk Ethel Jalbert said, “There’s an awful lot of people I believe who’ve lost somebody to suicide, and if they themselves have not they certainly have friends and relatives that have and they know the pain that it causes.”
Which is why people participated in this walk that’s sponsored by the National Association for Suicide Prevention, taking steps to making suicide prevention a national priority. Similar walks like this one in Fort Kent are taking place throughout the country.
Organizer of the Out of the Darkness Walk Ethel Jalbert said, “Doing this walk and helping to make people more aware, raising monies to try to educate people, there’s nothing to be ashamed of they did not cause this, and if somebody is in need or if somebody is struggling, there are resources available.”
The Out of the Darkness suicide prevention walk is a kick off to National Suicide Awareness Week, that pays a tribute to those that have lost their lives to suicide. The money raised at the walk is used for advocacy, prevention, research, and support for those who’ve lost someone they love to suicide.
Organizer of the Out of the Darkness Walk Pauline Bouchard said, “We won’t bring our loved ones back but if money can be raised to help save even one life it will make a difference.”
Organizer of the Out of the Darkness Walk Ethel Jalbert said, “We tend to forget that whenever there’s a loss to a family, there’s a loss to a community.”
And to help alleviate that loss; words of remembrance were written onto balloons that were released into the sky to promote suicide prevention one step at a time.
The fundraising goal of the walk was $5,000, and according to Jalbert, they exceeded their goal. Donations for suicide prevention will be accepted until December 31st, to do so go to www.afsp.org/walk