Suicide prevention month aims to save lives


photo or infographic by National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

HELP IS JUST ONE CALL AWAY. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a 24-hour hotline.

EDITOR’S NOTE: October is Suicide Prevention Month. The Voice of the Wildkats staff wants every Wildkat to know there are people to help you through all phases of your life. If you are suicidal or thinking of harming yourself, please reach out to the resources listed in this story, your counselor, a teacher or principal. They are all trained to help you. 


The number should be in everyone’s phone. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a national network of local centers. It is designed to provide free and confidential support for anyone who is in emotional distress or suicidal crisis. For 24 hours a day, seven days a week there are professionals who can help. 

October is Suicide Prevention Month. According to suicide is the second leading cause of death for young people between 10 to 24. The goal of designating a month as Suicide Prevention Month is to spread awareness about suicide prevention and mental health and ultimately save lives.

“The most important factor is helping people,” freshman Ashley Rodriguez said. “By helping people, we are not only saving one person but others too.”

Every attempt has a chance to be stopped. Schools have counselors to help youth who think about suicide while communities have people who specialize in listening and helping them in any way they can.

“If someone tells you they are thinking about suicide, you need to talk to a trusted adult,” head counselor Kristin Coleman said. “If they tell you in school, talk to a teacher, administrator, or counselor.  The person they informed will notify the counselor so that the appropriate steps for the students safety are taken.  If a student informs an adult at school that a friend is suicidal, that information is kept confidential.”

The World Health Organization‘s data shows that nearly 800,000 people die by suicide, and it is found among all ages, not specifically one age group. 

“I think suicide prevention is difficult to handle because the same persuasive methods you use on one person might not work on another,” senior Jillian Berger said. “Of course, it’s very important and very, very serious, but it’s not a perfect method and is something that we could definitely improve on.” 

Suicide is not a joking matter, and students need to take threats of suicide seriously. 

“Suicide prevention is highly significant due to a fact that suicide isn’t something to joke about because it is a serious mental health issue,” junior Landon Hunt said. “Suicide isn’t the answer. It is a permanent end to a temporary problem.”

Suicide prevention hotline is toll-free. There are also so many people on campus who can help. 

“When meeting with the student in crisis we do not disclose the name of the person that gave us the information,” Coleman said. “Often teens feel that if they ‘tell on’ their friend that they are breaking trust.  I tell students that I would rather have my friend mad at me and here, then not be here at all. ”

It takes one person to make a difference and sometimes just talking to someone is all people need.

“Sometimes people who have considered the idea of committing suicide just need someone to talk to,” Rodriguez said. “So just listening to them and making them feel less alone can help.”

Students should not try to help someone alone. If a friend turns to a student for help, they should immediately go to someone who is trained to help. Never leave a person talking about suicide alone.

“Counselors are trained to listen and talk with students and identify those that are in crisis,” Coleman said. “We have resources that are available to help the student through their crisis.”

There is also a new club, KATS joined for HOPE, with a focus on breaking the silence about mental health and teen suicide.

“We are excited about this is a new organization based on Cassidy Joined for HOPE,” Coleman said. “Cassidy was a student at College Park High School who died by suicide in the Fall of 2016.  Cassidy’s mom, Kim Hess, formed this national nonprofit organization in order to promote suicide awareness.”

Social studies teacher Andrea Eisinger is the sponsor for the club, and there are over 30 interested students.

“The purpose of this club is to break the silence about mental  health and teen suicide by beginning these conversations in the schools,” Coleman said. “It is focusing on preventative measures, self value, anti-bullying, social media dangers, making teens understand that they are NOT alone in how they feel and simply spreading the powerful message that Kindness Matters.”