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“Walk in Memory, Walk for Hope” calls attention to suicide prevention efforts



(CARSON CITY, Nev.)Nevada Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Director Mike Willden announced today that on Saturday, September 10, 2011, eight Nevada communities will take part in the fifth annual “Walk in Memory, Walk for Hope” event as part of National Suicide Prevention Week and Suicide Prevention Week in Nevada.  In the United States, someone dies by suicide every 15 minutes, accounting for more than 35,000 deaths annually.  In fact, in the U.S., twice as many people die from suicide than homicide.  In 2009, more than 500 Nevadans died as a result of suicide.

The purpose of the walk is to call greater attention and awareness to the devastating effect suicide has on our communities, and to remember loved-ones lost to suicide.  Memory walks will take place in Elko, Las Vegas, Douglas County, Pahrump, Winnemucca, Yerington, Pyramid Lake (Nixon), and Reno.

The Nevada Coalition for Suicide Prevention, a nonprofit organization that supports education, survivor bereavement and awareness programs throughout Nevada, is hosting the various walking events.  Walk participants are asked to donate $25, or $15 if on a team of three or more people; although a donation is not required to take part in the event.   All donations will be used to help fund various Coalition programs in communities throughout the state.

For more information about sponsoring or participating in the “Walk in Memory, Walk for Hope” event, go to www.nvsuicideprevention.org  or call the Nevada Office of Suicide Prevention at (775) 443-7843 or (702) 486-8225.

“Because there is help, there is hope,” stated Janett Massolo, Walk Coordinator for the Coalition. “We want to make sure individuals struggling with thoughts of suicide and the friends and families doing their best to support them can be connected to resources and services that can make a difference. The concerted efforts of the Nevada Coalition for Suicide Prevention, the Office of Suicide Prevention and the many local task forces and coalitions across the state hosting events such as the ‘Walk in Memory, Walk for Hope’ will help make Nevada a healthier and safer place to live.”

For information on suicide prevention, including information on learning the signs of suicidal behavior and the Nevada Suicide Prevention Plan, go to http://dhhs.nv.gov/SuicidePrevention.htm.  If you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

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