SEARHC to host International Survivors of Suicide Day events

November 13 2011

The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) Behavioral Health/Suicide Prevention Program on Saturday, Nov. 19, will join hundreds of other sites around the world to host events for the 13th Annual International Survivors of Suicide Day.

SEARHC will host events in Sitka and Klawock. The Sitka event is at 9 a.m. at the At Kaník Hít Community Health building first-floor conference room (1212 Seward Ave., the building with the totem pole) and the Klawock event is at 1 p.m. at the Alicia Roberts Medical Center blue conference room (7100 Klawock-Hollis Hwy. In Juneau, SEARHC staff will team up with the Juneau Suicide Prevention Coalition as it hosts an event at 2 p.m. at Holy Trinity Church (411 Gold St.).

International Survivors of Suicide Day is designed to support those people who have lost a loved one to suicide, giving survivors a chance to share their experiences and be supported in their loss. It’s also a chance to get information about resources for healing.

“This international day is both meaningful and helpful to the survivors that participate,” SEARHC Behavioral Health/Suicide Prevention Program Manager Wilbur Brown said. “It is a day of remembrance that provides survivors with a unique avenue to connect with others who have survived this tragedy of suicide loss.”

There also is an international webcast event that runs from 9-10:30 a.m. The webcast includes an international panel discussion featuring a group of experienced survivors and behavioral health professionals. After the international webcast ends, each of the local conference sites will hold local and regional discussions using satellite and Internet broadcast technology. Several local conference sites may use their own agendas that don’t include the international webcast (which is happening at most Alaska sites), and they may schedule additional activities such as healing circles, breakout groups and local panel discussions.

For those who can’t attend Saturday’s events in Juneau, Sitka or Klawock, they can access the international webcast through the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s website, http://www.afsp.org/ (click the International Survivors of Suicide Day icon for more information and a link to a registration page to view the broadcast). For those participating in the international webcast, an online chat will follow the event. Recordings from previous international webcast roundtables have been posted on the AFSP site.

For more information, please call Sheryl McAllister in Sitka at 966-8933, Anna Trudeau in Klawock at 755-4952, or Megan Gregory in Juneau at 463-6645 or Christopher Cairns in Juneau at 463-4251.