Creating Suicide Awareness at Pasco High School
PASCO, Wa.,--It was another typical day at Pasco High School. Students flooded the hallways heading for the cafeteria, looking for a break from academia. Yet, when they arrived, they were greeted with materials about suicide prevention. Students manned booths containing information on what suicide is and some of the signs to look out for.
"We're just here to talk to them, to tell them what its about, and how important it is to people's lives," said student Marco Rosas.
According to the American Association of Suicidology, 830 lives were lost in 2004--that's only in Washington. Suicide cannot be linked to one single motive. It's a combination of factors stemming anywhere from depression, mental illness as well as feeling isolated from peers. For Dillon McManamon, this issue is all to familiar.
"I've had a friend that committed suicide a couple years back and its hard for me to see other people not take it seriously," said McManamon.
According to Counselor Renee Matson, the average classroom size at pasco high is 32 students. And three students, she says, will have already made suicide attempts within the last year. It's becoming a growing concern for school administrators.
"We think its important to make an impact in our student population," said Matson.
And they are making an impact..by being the only school in the Tri-Cities to have a suicide awareness event. Matson also mentioned that the three steps to preventing suicide are-
- Showing that you care
- Asking questions
- Getting help for those who need it