Walk Scheduled for Survivors of Suicide

December 2nd, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

Officials from EMPACT-SPC, a local non-profit agency, are once again gathering community members to walk a 5k in honor loss survivors of suicide. At 8 am, Saturday, February 7th, walkers will come together at Tempe’s Kiwanis Park for the annual memorial Jeremyah Walk.

Those who have a family member or close friend who has committed suicide are up to nine times more likely to also be suicidal. This walk is one way to help the organization raise awareness about its services. It’s also one way we can help others and raise dollars to make sure programs are available for those struggling with depression, anxiety, grief and loss. The walk’s motto is:  “Take a walk, save a life. Help us create a safe, strong, and healthy community.”

Jeremyah was a 19 year old young man who died by suicide. He was the son of one of the EMPACT-SPC group members, Chris. Chris never thought he would be able to handle his son’s suicide. He found hope and comfort in our Tempe SOS group and eventually became a volunteer for EMPACT-SPC, to give back in a meaningful way. He came up with the idea to start a memorial walk/day of remembrance for fellow survivors, which has now become an annual event.


For more information, visit: www.jeremyahmemorial5k.com

UofA’s Creative Approach to Suicide Prevention Among Students

November 29th, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

Health leaders at the University of Arizona have approached suicide prevention among students and faculty with a creative eye. In lieu of asking each professor to specifically discuss suicide prevention and resources on campus, instead instructors are asked to incorporate appropriate power point presentations into their already established materials.


These educational slides discuss suicide in a way that ties to the educational subject at hand, but also immediately provides students with the information necessary to access resources on campus. It also keeps suicide prevention in the forefront of the university’s teaching staff.  The slides are free and available for others to use as well. For more information, visit: www.preventsuicide.arizona.edu/classroomresources

Guest post by Kelli Donley, Project Manager at ADHS/DBHS (contact her at Kelli.donley@azdhs.gov)


Family Caregivers are the Most Important Part of the Health Care Team

November 28th, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

The theme for this year’s National Caregivers Month is Care Comes Home. Care for most of our loved ones does not take place in hospitals or nursing homes.  Most care actually happens in the home, and that’s a good thing.

People are healthier at home. Caring for loved ones at home also lowers health care costs. Family caregivers have the best interests of their loved ones at heart and should not only be acknowledged as a part of the health care, but as the most important part of that team.

Family caregivers are the only people who are consistently present with their loved ones across all care settings. Everyone else can and does change.  You may have more than one doctor, nurse or pharmacy.  But it is the family caregivers who are there through it all.

Family caregivers spend an average of 20 hours per week caring for their loved ones, more time than any medical professional spends with them.  They have a better understanding of the loved one and know more about their health. The family caregiver is also in the best position to notice changes and respond to issues.

The Nation’s 90 million family caregivers are on the front line. They provide care every day and enable their loved ones to stay at home longer where they are happier and healthier.


Can Thanksgiving be Happy and Stress Free?

November 24th, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »


The holidays can be a stressful time, and Thanksgiving Day is no exception.   From   planning and cooking to getting together with relatives or friends, it can all lead to stress.     These pressures can take much of the joy out of Thanksgiving.



Below are some suggestions to make your Thanksgiving day a HAPPY one, and stress free:

  • Make a plan. Don’t wait until the last minute. Figure out menus and guest lists early. Do your shopping in advance to avoid crowds. Prepare some foods early. If you buy a frozen turkey, remember that depending upon the weight, a turkey can take up to five days to thaw in the refrigerator. By coordinating and planning ahead, you can save yourself and your family a lot of last minute worry.
  • Ask for help. You don’t have to do everything yourself. Have guests bring a side dish or dessert. The whole family can help clean house and put up decorations. Have kids set the table and keep them busy while you cook in the kitchen. Making sure to share the work of Thanksgiving will ensure that everyone has a happy day.
  • Eat well, exercise, and sleep. Rest and a healthy body can help fight stress. Eating normally, staying active and going to bed on time may all seem like simple solutions, but they really work and will keep you from panicking when things get demanding.
  • Remember what’s important. Take time out to enjoy the day and have some fun. Watch the parade, play a game, talk with guests, or take a walk. Even though the meal may seem like the biggest part of the day, the most important part is spending time with your loved ones and giving thanks for all you have.


Happy Thanksgiving!

Pascua Yaqui to Discuss Suicide Prevention with Community

November 23rd, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

The Centered Spirit Program with the Pascua Yaqui Tribe is hosting a variety of suicide prevention events during November and December. Here are three you don’t want to miss:

  • November 24: A conversation with tribal elders about suicide, including prescription drug overdoses. Centered Spirit Program Director Dr. Clare Cory is helping lead the conversation.
  • December 3: Community conversation on suicide prevention
  • December 23: SAFETALK training to tribal youth, in partnership with EMPACT.


For more information about these events, contact Vanessa M. Bustos — 480-768-2064.


Today is National Survivors of Suicide Day

November 22nd, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

November 22, 2014 is National Survivors of Suicide Day. It is sponsored by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Every year, survivors of suicide loss across the world are united at events in hundreds of cities spanning 6 continents.  They gather to help each other cope with the tragedy of losing someone to suicide.

People who have survived the loss of a loved one to suicide can find help from others who have been through the same experience. They understand the grief, guilt, anger, and confusion. There is comfort and hope in knowing that you are not alone.

National Survivors of Suicide Loss Day started in 1999 by Senator Harry Reid, a survivor of his father’s suicide. Since then, it has been set aside by the US Congress as a day when the friends and family of those who have died by suicide can join together for healing and support. It always falls on the Saturday before Thanksgiving.

Survivor Day Live Online Broadcast

November 21st, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

Survivors of SuicideNational Survivors of Suicide Loss Day can be life changing. The day is set aside for people affected by suicide loss to get together to find comfort as they share stories of healing and hope.

For many people, this is the first time they realize they are not alone. Hearing stories from others who have been through the same thing can be helpful.

If you can’t attend a Survivors of Suicide Loss Day gathering, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is hosting “Survivor Day Live” on November 22 at 1pm EST. This online broadcast is hosted by fellow suicide loss survivors and experts on coping with a suicide loss.  For information on joining the broadcast, go to http://www.survivorday.org/survivor-day-live/.

What can you do to stop bullying

November 19th, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

All adults have a role in stopping bullying – here’s some key items you need to know:




Stand Up! (to bullying)

November 18th, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

Celebrate National Family Caregiver Month

November 17th, 2014 by Claudia Sloan No comments »

NFCMThere are more than 90 million Americans who are family caregivers. This is a great time to recognize their efforts.

With the ranks of family caregivers growing every year, it’s important to recognize the role they play.   They help with emotional, nursing, financial, and housekeeping services among other things.  Caregiving can be on a daily or part-time basis and can extend for a few years or a lifetime.

This is a great time to thank, support, educate, and celebrate family caregivers. They are America’s primary long-term care providers. In fact, eighty percent of long-term care is provided by families or friends.

You can celebrate National Family Caregivers Month by:

  • Offer to help a family caregiver so they can have a needed break.
  • Send a card or flowers to brighten a family caregiver’s day.
  • Help a family caregiver decorate for the holidays
  • Offer to address envelopes for a caregiver’s holiday cards.

Prepare Thanksgiving dinner for a caregiving family in your community.