‘Live On’: Preventing suicide in Utah

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WASATCH, Utah (ABC4) – This month, the Wasatch County School District is partnering up with Live On in the hopes of bringing awareness to suicide prevention.

To further advocate for the cause, the district will be hosting various events which will be available to the entire Utah community.

Research shows that the potential mental health effects of the COVID-19 pandemic are profound, particularly as the pandemic spreads and has longer-term effects on the general population, economy, and vulnerable people.

Nearly half of adults in the U.S. report worse mental health since the pandemic began. This pandemic is associated with uncertainty and unpredictability, social isolation, economic vulnerability, and other stressors that are also risk factors for suicide and accidental overdose.

“COVID-19 will cause distress and leave many people vulnerable to behavioral health problems,” states Mikelle More, Intermountain Healthcare’s senior vice president and chief community health officer.  “These consequences are likely to be present for longer and peak later than the actual pandemic.”

In September 2020, it was announced that the state of Utah, in collaboration with public and private partners, was developing a suicide prevention campaign. The ‘Live On’ campaign was launched during the COVID-19 pandemic to start reaching out to those in need.

Now on April 15, schools and communities are coming together to further the campaign.

“WCSD is participating in Live On, a statewide effort to prevent suicide by promoting education, providing resources, and changing our culture around suicide and mental health,” writes the Wasatch County School District.

Events planned by the district range from Mental health first aid to presentations, film showings, panels, and meal discounts.

For those interested in participating in the events, the district has them listed down below.

Live On is a $2 million, three-year, public-private campaign to increase protective social norms around mental health and suicide prevention. The website is liveonutah.org and gives people resources to find help while also giving them the opportunity to talk to others who are struggling and have those difficult, but much-needed conversations.

The organization calls itself a “mantra of hope” and is a statewide effort to prevent suicide by promoting education, providing resources, and changing the culture around suicide and mental health.

“Together we can get through, reach out, lift up, look ahead, and Live On,” writes the WCSD.

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