4th Annual Long Island Crisis Center Suicide Prevention Walk
John Mitty Friday, September 14, 2012
LONG ISLAND CRISIS CENTER TO HOLD 4TH ANNUAL SUICIDE AWARENESS WALK IN LONG BEACH TEENS ARE FEATURED SPEAKERS
September 14, 2011, Bellmore, NY – Long Island Crisis Center (LICC) will hold its 4th Annual “Let’s Walk, Let’s Talk…Stepping Together to Prevent Suicide” event on Sunday, September 30th on the Boardwalk at Riverside Blvd. in Long Beach. Registration begins at 11:00 a.m.
At 12:00 noon, a brief program will highlight two high school students: Jamie Isaacs and Brooke DiPalma.
Jamie is a victim of intense bullying. She considers herself a strong survivor due to the fact that the bullying started when she was in second grade at 8 years old and lasted till the end of seventh grade at 13 years of age. The bullying only stopped when she transferred to the Knox School in St. James, a private school, where she is currently in 11thgrade. During these years, however, she has evolved from victim to activist - founding the Jamie Isaacs Foundation For Anti-Bullying, writing her story in the book, In Jamie’s Words, and working with both local and state legislators to pass strong anti-bullying laws.
Brooke DiPalma is a student at West Islip High School who decided to address the issue of suicide prevention and awareness when her father committed suicide. She created the “P.S. I Love You” Campaign that went viral when she did a YouTube video. In the video, she asks everyone to look out and care for others who may be having suicidal thoughts. She designated a day in February in her school to be known as “P.S. I Love You Day.” Once she spread the word, it was adopted by many other schools, both locally and in other states. On that day, the students raise money and donate the proceeds to organizations that are work in suicide prevention. The Crisis Center was selected by Brooke and her fellow students to be the recipient of 2012’s fundraising.
The Crisis Center, now in its 41st year, is dedicated to increasing suicide awareness, educating everyone about the warning signs of suicide, and de-stigmatizing the subject of suicide and spreading the word that “it’s okay to ask for help.”
“Recent statistics about suicide underscore the importance of the Crisis Center’s 24/7 hotline for anyone to be able to access at critical times in their lives,” states Linda Leonard, Executive Director. “Our Walk is an opportunity for anyone who has been touched by suicide, either directly or indirectly, to talk openly about a subject that has, for too long, remained in the shadows.”
Suicide and suicide prevention affects everyone:
- For the first time since 1998, suicide is in the top ten leading causes of death in the U.S.;
- It is the third leading cause of death for adolescents 14 to 19 years of age;
- It is the second leading cause of death for young adults 19 – 24 years of age;
- Elderly suicide rates are 50% higher than for young people;
- One of every five suicides in the country is committed by a returning soldier from Iraq or Afghanistan – or once every 90 minutes;
- For every suicide, there is an average of 13 suicide attempts;
- 8 out of 10 people who commit suicide tell someone first.
On-site registration for the Walk begins at 11:00 a.m. Online registration is taking place right now at www.longislandcrisiscenter.org or call 516-826-0244 for more information. A minimum donation of $25 per person is suggested. A t-shirt will be given to all who raise $50 or more.
Long Island Crisis Center is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) agency that operates 24 hours-a-day, 7 days-a-week staffed, live hotlines that are free, anonymous and confidential. Counseling is also provided through: an online chat at www.licconline.org; texting “LICC” to 839863; and drop-in counseling at 2740 Martin Ave., Bellmore, N.Y.
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