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Monrovia Healing Connections Hosting Community Education Events in Suicide Prevention

The campaign is due to end on Tuesday, March 25 with a community rally at 5:30 p.m. in Monrovia Library Park.

Patch file image.
Patch file image.

Monrovia Healing Connections, a task force of community members, city officials, students and Monrovia Unified School District staff, is presenting March4Balance, a series of community outreach and educational events to raise awareness of suicide prevention and related mental health issues.

Task force members are visiting service clubs, teen commissions, churches and other community-based gatherings through March 23 to give presentations on suicide awareness, talk about what is being done in Monrovia to aid and support those dealing with emotional and psychological issues and provide brochures listing tools and resources.

"Over the past four years, we have lost five Monrovians under the age of 24 to suicide," said Ulises Gutierrez, March4Balance campaign coordinator. "We can't all be mental health professionals, but all of us should learn how to respond when someone needs help. Our goal is to get all community members trained on how to recognize and respond to people who are suffering and in danger of harming themselves," Gutierrez said.

The campaign is due to end on Tuesday, March 25 with a community rally at 5:30 p.m. in Monrovia Library Park.

—City News Service

R. Ray Morford March 17, 2014 at 01:46 PM
Outstanding program. Leaders spoke at our Church Sunday morning. You don't need to be an expert to support this program. But everyone can be the eyes and ears for someone hurting, so they can get help.
rubberband March 17, 2014 at 02:34 PM
^ What Ray said. True. If it appears that someone is not doing O.K. and they seem like they might be having thoughts of self harming/suicide, or if the person says things like, “I’m so depressed, I can’t go on,” ask the question: “Are you having thoughts of suicide?” Sounds rather blunt, or like you might "put ideas into their head" but it really is very effective and much of the time a person who is feeling this way is very conflicted and wants relief. Never promise to keep a secret that someone is feeling suicidal. Seek help for them, and tell someone who can help immediately....they might be angry at you initially for telling, however having them angry at you for a bit is better than that person being dead. this link is useful: http://www.helpguide.org/mental/suicide_prevention.htm
R. Ray Morford March 17, 2014 at 02:57 PM
While working in Law Enforcement, a hurting person could be placed in a 72 hour detention for observation. The problem is the person could be let our on their own without much follow up. With insurance, some behavioral groups will take people in. In other cases, it takes a court order to get them to stay for full treatment. This new program is just in its infancy, but I'm thrilled our City is even thinking in this realm. We need to give HOPE again. It makes a better City for ALL.
Gerald Pool March 17, 2014 at 03:19 PM
Excellent work, Ulises Gutierrez! Great words of wisdom above. Take any verbalization regarding suicide or other self-harm seriously, even a manipulative attempt to "scare" a parent or boyfriend/girlfriend. An attempt to "fake" suicide can go terribly wrong. Stopping a child or teen from a desperate act of suicide or other self harm is crucial. Futher, child and teen distress (family issues, alcohol or other drug abuse, being bullied, poor self image, whether physical or social) is a powerful, underlying root. Timely follow up is crucial for lasting resolution. As stated above, I'd rather be on the person's black list than on his or her funeral guest list.

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