Local agencies observe World Suicide Prevention Day

BLACKSBURG (WSLS) – Wednesday is World Suicide Prevention Day. It takes place midway through Suicide Prevention Week which is held annually to raise awareness of the importance and need for suicide prevention.

New River Valley Community Services in Blacksburg is one of many agencies reaching out to help people who need mental health support and to encourage everyone to educate themselves about depression and risk factors. The agency says it’s important to raise awareness among community members concerning how to assist others in need of mental health support.

While suicide or attempted suicide can impact anyone, experts say one group most at risk may surprise you.

“It’s surprising I think for a lot of people to realize that the older adult male population is actually the population within our community that has the highest rate of suicide,” said community relations specialist Mike Wade.

Wade says its important for family and friends top take any talk of suicide seriously.

NRVCS has a number of events planned in observance of Suicide Prevention Week.

Tonight, NRVCS will show the Sundance Film Festival award-winning documentary, Running from Crazy from 2 – 4 p.m. at its Blacksburg Center, located at 700 University City Boulevard. In the film, actress Mariel Hemingway, granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway, seeks a greater understanding of her family history of suicide and mental illness.

The screening will be followed by a facilitated discussion about the film, suicide, and mental health. It is open to the public and free.

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