Hike, wear yellow, and take action during National Suicide Prevention Month

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Erin Ivie, Executive Director of SpeakUp ReachOut, holds a box of 50 live butterflies about to be tossed during the “Lessons from a Butterfly” reading at Saturday’s memorial event at Freedom Park in Edwards. “When we find ourselves in a cocoon in isolation and despair and cannot find our way in the dark, remember it is similar to where butterflies sprout their wings,” he said. said Ivie.
Courtesy SpeakUp ReachOut

September is National Suicide Prevention Month and SpeakUp ReachOut has a number of local events planned for the month following its annual commemorative event last weekend.

The first SpeakUp ReachOut event is the Thursday virtual screening of Kevin Hines’ documentary “Suicide: The Ripple Effect”. Hines will also be the guest speaker at an event on September 23 at Battle Mountain High School, which will also feature a local panel of behavioral health experts. The event is part of Vail Daily’s Longevity Project series, which focuses on behavioral health issues in Eagle County.



All community ages 10 and up are invited to attend Thursday’s screening, and registration is required. Hines miraculously survived his suicide attempt at San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge and went on to become a world-renowned mental health advocate and motivational speaker.

Her personal story is a catalyst for understanding why suicide prevention is so important and vital in saving lives. A conversational style panel discussion will take place after the screening with local pastor Molly Booker, construction company owner Dave Dantas and Kala Bettis of Eagle Valley Behavioral Health.



Wear Yellow Day, a new event for SpeakUp ReachOut, will take place on Friday September – Global Suicide Prevention Awareness Day. Join SpeakUp ReachOut for an early morning roundabout and wear yellow that day.

Additional Wear Yellow Day partners are two local Hope Squads based at Homestake Peak School and Gypsum Creek Middle School.

“Show your support for this important public health issue by posting your photos with an ‘eaglecountywearyellow’ hashtag and a SpeakUp ReachOut tag,” said Erin Ivie, executive director of SpeakUp ReachOut, in a press release.

SpeakUp ReachOut is also running two hikes for change on a short loop at Beaver Creek Resort on September 12-26. The hikes will provide a chance to recreate the outdoors while having informal conversations about mental health in Eagle County. Both hikes are a great opportunity to learn more about SpeakUp ReachOut’s mission and how to get involved.

On September 7, Eagle County Commissioners will read a resolution declaring September National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month in Eagle County.

“It is important that our local government supports our efforts and we are grateful to the County Commissioners and the support of Eagle County,” said Ivie.

The evidence-based Signs of Suicide program that teaches the ACT (Acknowledge, Care and Tell) method will also launch in September at many schools in Eagle County in 16 different classrooms, reaching students in grades 5 through the 9th grade. The goal of SpeakUp ReachOut is to educate all students in grades 5 to 12 before the end of the school year.

These hour-long classes teach students how to identify the warning signs of suicide and seek help from a trusted adult.

“We are grateful to the local schools for their partnership and support for these lifesaving courses for our local youth. We know our kids are struggling and we want to make sure they know where and how to get help, ”said Ivie.

For more information visit SpeakUpReachOut.org.


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