On Thursday, June 19, community members will take to the streets of downtown South Bend to support the Yellow Ribbon program of the Suicide Prevention Center of St. Joseph County.
The Paint the Town Yellow 5K Fun Run steps off at 6 p.m. in Seitz Park.
Participants are encouraged to wear yellow to show their support of the area school program which focuses on youth suicide prevention.
“Facing the death of a loved one to suicide is tragic; facing the loss of a young person to suicide is unimaginable. In this country, we lose 4,600 young people—age 15-24—to suicide each year, leaving family members and friends to deal with a devastating loss,” says Tracy Schneider, Program Director of Suicide Prevention Center. “The Yellow Ribbon Suicide Prevention Program brings education and awareness directly to area classrooms about this issue.”
Schneider shares the following local statistics: In Indiana, 109 youth took their lives in 2009 (most current data available), and more than 1,600 Hoosiers ages 15-24 visited local emergency rooms due to self-inflicted injuries.
The Yellow Ribbon Suicide Prevention Program is in seven area high schools and middle schools. It is the only program offered free to schools that teaches students how to ask for help and how to help a friend in need.
“Since 2007, the Yellow Ribbon program has educated more than 10,000 students in St. Joseph County,” Schneider said.
Participants of the Paint the Town Yellow fun run will be treated to a free barbeque, followed by a concert organized by Seitz & Sounds and DTSB. There is still time to register; visit www.SJCSuicidePrevention.org for more information.