Suicide Prevention Week
by Aren Chaturanyakoon
Sep. 4-10 is National Suicide Prevention Week, which surrounds National Suicide Prevention Day on the 10th; the yellow ribbon is the symbol for this week. Santiago is doing its part against a preventable cause of death by informing students about the warning signs of someone who is suicidal as well as what those who are contemplating suicide can do. Students are encouraged to visit peer counseling if they are depressed or have any thoughts about suicide.
Peer counseling, held in room D202, is a class full of fellow students who listen to and help anybody who may be experiencing a depressing time. A common myth is that if someone is talking about their suicidal thoughts, then they will end up doing it, when in fact the opposite is true. Everything exchanged in peer counseling is confidential. There haven’t been any students thinking of committing suicide that have come seeking help yet, but there have been numerous individuals who have personally thanked peer counseling for their efforts against teen suicide.
Among these efforts, a public speaker by the name of Jone Butters held an assembly for the students at Santiago to inform them about the dangers of suicide and how to combat it. Blank white canvas tee-shirts were put out during lunch in the quad; students could write their own experiences and personal stories of how suicide has affected them. These shirts were hung up for display on a clothing line, available for anyone to view. Face paintings representing the statistics of suicide were given out by peer counseling to anyone who would was willing.
If you are having thoughts about suicide then contact 1-800-273-TALK or visit peer counseling to seek help.
By Aren Chaturanyakoon, Entertainment Editor