(RED DEER, AB) – To recognize World Suicide Prevention Day, staff from The Outreach Centre will attend the Downtown Red Deer Farmer’s Market on Wednesday, September 7 and the Red Deer Public Market on Saturday, September 10 with information and interactive activities related to mental health and suicide prevention.

World Suicide Prevention Day is a global event observed every year on September 10. This year’s slogan “Creating Hope Through Action”, serves as a reminder that there is an alternative to suicide, and that our actions may provide hope to those who are struggling.

Dawne Adkins, a certified Grief Recovery Specialist at The Outreach Centre, says that it’s important to keep the conversations about suicide going. “We are looking forward to an opportunity to connect with the community, by starting conversations that generate awareness and understanding about suicide and mental health.”

According to the World Health Organization, for every person who dies by suicide there are another 20 people who have made a suicide attempt or had serious thoughts of suicide. The stigma that surrounds mental illness and suicide may prevent people from seeking the help they need. Raising community awareness is key to suicide prevention. “Suicide can be an uncomfortable topic, but one that should be discussed openly and honestly”, says Adkins. “Bringing attention to the issue reduces stigma, raises awareness and lets people know that they are not alone.”

The Outreach Centre offers suicide prevention and awareness programs, as well as support for those bereaved by suicide. There are also free courses in mental health and suicide prevention, available online at www.theoutreachcentre.org.

On April 1, 2020, Suicide Information & Education Services and Women’s Outreach officially came together to become The Outreach Centre. All services and teams remain the same. For more information, call 403.347.2480 or visit www.theoutreachcentre.org.