Saint Paul, MN, September 20, 2011 --(PR.com
)-- On Sunday, September 25th, Minnesotans will walk as part of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) Out of the Darkness Community Walks in St. Paul’s Como Park. Thousands of people nation-wide participate in these walks to benefit AFSP in efforts to raise money for vital research and education programs to prevent suicide, save lives, increase national awareness about depression and suicide, advocate for mental health issues, and assist survivors of suicide loss. The Out of the Darkness Community Walks are 3-5 mile walks taking place in over 200 communities across the country this fall. There are five walks this fall for the AFSP around the state of Minnesota.
Wade Hanson of Wade Hanson Enterprises is a board member for the Greater MN Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. He lost his sister to suicide 10 years ago and since being on The Apprentice, he has been inspired to become more involved in a variety of charitable organizations and events. The AFSP is particularly important to Hanson.
Donna Hayes of Blaine, MN nominated the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Greater MN Chapter to be recognized in the Jimmy Johnson Helmet of Hope World Tour. Jimmy Johnson is a NASCAR driver (reigning 5-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion) who began a charitable foundation in 2006. Since then the foundation has contributed $3.5 million to various organizations. Johnson’s actual helmet of The Helmet of Hope World Tour will be part of the ceremonies at the Black Bear Crossing in St. Paul’s Como Park on September 25th.
The fundraising goal for the Como Park event is $40,000. Less that half of that goal has been realized so far.
Founded in 1987, The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, a 501(c)(3) organization, has been at the forefront of a wide range of suicide prevention initiatives in 2011 -- each designed to reduce loss of life from suicide. Efforts include groundbreaking research, new educational campaigns, innovative demonstration projects and critical policy work. AFSP is expanding their assistance to people whose lives have been affected by suicide, reaching out to offer support and offering opportunities to become involved in prevention.
The number of community-based chapters has grown to 48 with two-dozen more in development. There is a growing list of friends and supporters leading a grassroots constituency that can advocate for the policies and legislation at the state and federal levels to advance suicide prevention.
With a suicide attempt estimated to occur every minute of every day in the United States and over 36,000 lives lost each year, the importance of AFSP's mission has never been greater, nor their work more urgent.
Facts About Suicide in the U.S. and MN
Every 14.6 minutes someone dies by suicide. In 2008, there were 36,035 reported suicide deaths in the U.S., according to the latest available data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Suicide is now the 10th leading cause of death in this country. Current rates for every age group between 35 and 74 have increased, as well as rates among teens. Though suicide attempts are not reported, it is estimated that close to one million people make a suicide attempt each year. Research has shown that 90 percent of people who die by suicide have a diagnosable psychiatric disorder at the time of their death, most often unrecognized or untreated depression.
In Minnesota, suicide is the second leading cause of death for 15- to 34-year-olds; the third leading cause of death for 10- to 14-year-olds; and the fourth leading cause of death for 35- to 54-year-olds. Approximately three times the number of Minnesotans dies from suicide than from homicide (approximately 500 deaths per year). Facts obtained from the Minnesota Department of Health.
For more information contact:
Greater MN Chapter of American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Board Member
Out of the Darkness Walk in Blaine, MN, secured Helmet of Hope for walks
Out of the Darkness Walk in Como Park, PR Specialist Darren Varley Creative
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
Out of the Darkness Community Walks
Helmet of Hope