The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention will host a walk 11 a.m. April 1 at Elmer Gray Stadium to raise awareness and help prevent suicide. Registration will begin at 10 a.m. with lunch served after the walk concludes.
Suicide is one of the top three causes of death among people ages 18-24 and the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. For every one successful suicide, there are 25 attempts. The director of the Medical and Counseling Care Center, Steve Rowland, helps students who have suffered with depression and anxiety.
“Every life is important, and those that struggle with the thoughts of suicide need to know they matter and there is hope,” Rowland said.
According to afsp.org, 44,193 Americans die by suicide every year and the financial impact is $44 billion annually. On average, there are 121 suicides per day, the site said.
“This is only the second time we done this walk,” said counselor Michelle Overman. “We started because a student came to us who was passionate about suicide prevention and we partnered with her and her mom.”
While women are three times as likely as a man to attempt suicide, males are four times as likely to die from it. Men are three-and-a-half times more likely to commit suicide than women. Males made up seven out of 10 suicides in 2015.
“When I was two years old, I lost my father to suicide,” Kalie Dame, sophomore animal science major from Olney, said. “My mother came across an organization called the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and brought their fundraising event the Out of the Darkness Community Walk to our area.”
“AFSP offers a campus walk to bring awareness to the 1100 college student suicides each year, and I have now brought one to our campus with the hopes of reaching anyone who may be suffering. If you are struggling I encourage you to reach out to someone, anyone because your story isn’t over yet,” Dame said.