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Monday, November 24, 2008

A Million Calls

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline network has answered its one millionth call since the hotline was launched on Jan. 1, 2005.

“The Lifeline reached this significant milestone because more people in emotional distress or suicidal crisis are becoming aware that help is available just by picking up the telephone and dialing 1-800-273-TALK,” said the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s acting administrator, Eric Broderick, D.D.S, M.P.H.

Using state-of-the-art technology and a network of 133 local crisis centers across the country, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (Lifeline) can immediately link a caller seeking help to a trained counselor closest to the caller’s location, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Calls to the toll-free Lifeline are confidential.

“People who feel hopeless, who don’t see a way out of their problems and their pain, need to know that there is somewhere they can turn for support and assistance. You are not alone,” Dr. Broderick said.

SAMHSA, which established the Lifeline in 2005 with a grant to Link2Health Solutions, Inc., has been working with organizations such as the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors and the Suicide Prevention Resource Center to focus public attention on the nationwide impact of suicide and to highlight ways to prevent it. In 2005, suicides accounted for 32,637 deaths in the United States. The suicide estimate is for the latest year for which data is available. The total is almost twice the number of homicides.

Within the past 15 months, the Lifeline has become linked with the Veterans Suicide Prevention Hotline - a partnership between SAMHSA and the Department of Veterans Affairs. The Hotline provides national, around-the-clock access to crisis counseling for veterans and their families. Veterans seeking help or concerned family members can call 800-273-TALK (8255) and press “1” to be connected to a specialized call center run by the Department of Veterans Affairs and staffed by mental health professionals.

Currently, calls to the Lifeline average 47,500 per month, with more than 1,580 people calling daily.
...from SAMHSA website

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

10th Annual National Survivors of Suicide Day

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A Day of Healing For Survivors of Suicide Loss

This Saturday, join with other survivors of suicide loss at a local site near you or register to watch the 90-minute program from your home computer from 1-2:30pm Eastern Time and take part in a free online chat immediately afterwards.

The program includes a blend of emotional support and information about resources for healing for survivors of suicide loss. Survivors and mental health professionals discuss their experiences and answer the questions that so many survivors face: Why did this happen? How do I cope?

To find a conference site nearest you, or to register to watch the webcast from home, visit www.afsp.org/survivorday. When you register to watch from home, you are automatically registered for the online chat afterwards.
...from Joanne Harpel, AFSP

Thursday, November 6, 2008

SPAN and AFSP Merge

Washington D.C./New York, N.Y. - November 6, 2008 – Two of the nation’s leading suicide prevention organizations – the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) and Suicide Prevention Action Network USA (SPAN USA) have announced their intent to merge. More information is available at www.span.org and www.afsp.org.

For the full text of this press release, go to SPAN or AFSP websites.
...from SPAN USA website

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

10th Annual National Survivors of Suicide Day

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A Day of Healing For Survivors of Suicide Loss

Join with other survivors of suicide loss at a local site near you or register to watch the 90-minute program from your home computer from 1-2:30 Eastern Time and take part in a free online chat immediately afterwards. To find a conference site nearest you, or to register to watch the webcast from home, visit www.afsp.org/survivorday. (Please note that we continue to add to the list of over 165 participating cities.)

The program includes a blend of emotional support and information about resources for healing for survivors of suicide loss. Survivors and mental health professionals discuss their experiences and answer the questions that so many survivors face: Why did this happen? How do I cope?

We hope you'll share in this powerful day of support, information, and healing. Please feel free to pass this message on to anyone you think might be interested.