YES ~ we're making a difference!!!

Suicide is a difficult word to say and a hard issue to tackle.  But suicide is not an individual problem ~ it is a community issue!  Given the strong individualistic tendencies of today's culture, we often forget the communal aspect of life.  You see, every decision we make, positive or negative, affects others.  It may be directly or indirectly, but we are affected just the same.

With that, I wanted to share some amazing things that are making a big difference:

In Munster, IN, we recently held our Out of the Darkness walk for AFSP.  Though the day was dark (at 10 am), rainy, cold, and wet, we went anyway.  We had 364 walkers holding pictures of loved ones, banners, balloons, and each other as we shared our experiences.  Though our stories are different, they are also the same.  By the end, we raised over $28,000 toward suicide prevention efforts!!  Given the lack of research, these funds are invaluable in saving lives and making a difference.

Thank you to all who donated and also for those that were not able to donate but kept these and other efforts in prayer.  We had a successful walk and we are so very appreciative of all efforts!

In another example, I wanted to share an email I received from a participant after attending our recent ASIST training (shared with persmission):

THANK YOU SO MUCH for the training last week. I thought about those 2 days all weekend and prayed that I would be calm and prepared if/when the time came that I would need to use my newly learned skills. Well, I had no idea that day would be TODAY!!! My very first student today felt like she had no other alternatives. Thanks to the interventions I learned just a few days ago from you and Alan, I was better equipped today. I was able to ask her straight out about suicide. The look of relief on her face when I said "suicide" was indescribable. Being able to identify, understand, and talk about her ambivalence was huge! The understanding phase is just so important! I also found myself using the phrases, "I care, I understand, and I'll help." In the end, I was able to assist her and her mom with coming up with a safeplan and links to resources. From start to finish it all lasted over 3 hours. I have felt so exhausted the rest of today. However, I am SO thankful and blessed to have had the skills to be able to assist. Thank you so very much for training me in the intervention skills I was able to use today!
God Bless!!

How beautiful to know that our training helped a participant use learned skills and ultimately make a difference in a young life.

When each of us does just one small thing, it adds up to so much!!!  The choices we make do make a difference!!!

Photo provided by Photoxpress

1 comment:

Ulla said...

Looks like you had a great turnout, almost as many walkers as we had this year, for some reason our count was down from last year. Congratulations!
Thank you for sharing this story it is wonderful to know that this program works and it sure is worth the time and effort to make a difference.
Keep on keeping on, you are doing such a great job :)