(Good Things Utah) Weber State University and Intermountain Healthcare are announcing the expansion and leadership change for an important Northern Utah suicide prevention coalition.
The NUHOPE Suicide Prevention Task Force, which began in the fall of 2007 with Intermountain Healthcare and Intermountain McKay-Dee Hospital at the helm, will now be led by the Department of Health Administrative Services housed in the Weber State University Dumke College of Health Professions.
Over the years, NUHOPE has brought together community members, survivors, and local organizations to address suicide awareness and prevention in Weber and Davis Counties.
NUHOPE currently employs six educators who will continue on under Weber State’s leadership.
Working as guest lecturers in local junior high and high schools, the team has had a lasting impact, reaching 97,108 students with 3,440 presentations over the last 10 academic years.
In addition to education outreach, NUHOPE supports the Legacy Suicide Survivor Support Network and hosts the annual NUHOPE Suicide Awareness Walk in September.
Kristy Jones, community health director at Intermountain Healthcare, said she is excited to see the program continue to impact Northern Utah.
“The NUHOPE Suicide Prevention Task Force has a longstanding reputation in Weber and Davis counties as a strong force in the suicide prevention realm,” Jones said. “This transition will ensure the NUHOPE Program will continue to expand in expertise and outreach for many years to come.”
As the program transitions to Weber State with funding support from Intermountain Healthcare, plans are already in place to expand support to college students and expanded community services.
Dr. Miland Palmer, director of Weber State’s Bachelor’s in Public Health program, will lead the task force.
“I am so excited for this partnership and to bring NUHOPE to Weber State University. With support from the Health Administrative Services Department and the Dumke College of Health Professions, NUHOPE will be able to grow and increase in reach,” Palmer said. “There is still work to be done in suicide awareness and prevention in our community. It is a great honor for us to carry this legacy into the future.”
Kinley Austad, a senior majoring in family studies at Weber State, said she has seen the impact NUHOPE has made on countless individuals and their families in the area.
“The community programs headed by NUHOPE have saved countless lives by offering hope and providing support to those struggling with suicide,” Austad said. “As rates of mental health continue to rise, I believe that these programs are needed more than ever. I am excited to see how Weber State will continue in NUHOPE’s mission by reaching out to struggling individuals and their families.”
One of NUHOPE’s biggest community outreach programs is the annual Suicide Awareness Walk, which is held each September in conjunction with the Harvest Moon Festival, the walk has drawn thousands of attendees and is a chance for the community to gather to talk about suicide prevention, remember those who have been lost, and heal together.
This year’s Suicide Awareness Walk will be held on Sept. 17.
“We invite everyone in the community who has been touched by suicide in any way to join us on Saturday, Sept. 17th for the 15th Annual Suicide Awareness Walk,” Palmer said. “The walk provides an amazing opportunity for community members to gather together in a spirit of hope and healing.”
For more information on the NUHOPE Program, please visit https://nuhopeutah.org/
To read more helpful medical information, visit IntermountainHealthcare.org
**This segment contains sponsored content