Nevada is the second in the nation for per capita suicides with a suicide rate of 19.2 per 100,000 people, nearly twice the national average. More Nevadans die each year by suicide than by homicide, AIDS or motor vehicle accidents.
Based on the rate for Nevada, in Douglas County it is projected that 10 people will take their own lives over the next 12 months. To help lessen this number, the Suicide Prevention Network of Douglas County is holding two events to raise awareness that suicide can be averted through intervention and counseling.
From 7-9 p.m. Sept. 10 at the Carson Valley United Methodist Church, the network will host a town meeting to provide an open forum to learn about suicide and its impacts on families and the community. A panel representing service providers and people who have been impacted by suicide will share their own experiences and respond to questions from the audience.
On Sept. 15, the network will sponsor the Douglas County Walk in Memory, Walk in Hope. This walk is one of four taking place on the same day in other communities around the state: Elko, Reno and Las Vegas.
Sign ups for the walk will be in the pavilion at Heritage Park in Gardnerville at 8 a.m. The two-mile walk itself begins at 8:30. As adults and older youth are walking, children will have the opportunity to create a mural by drawing pictures that represent memories of those loved ones they have lost to suicide. In addition, the Suicide Memorial Quilt will be on display. Following the walk will be a service of remembrance.
These two events bracket National Suicide Prevention Week. They are part of a number of activities taking place through out Nevada in conjunction with the Nevada Coalition for Suicide Prevention. Both the Town Meeting and the Walk are open to anyone who would like to participate.
For more information contact the Partnership of Community Resources at 782-8611 or call the Nevada Office of Suicide Prevention at 684-3475.