Dear Boulder and Broomfield Community,
It takes a village….
This spring, touched by the ever-growing number of suicides in Colorado, including several that affected Mental Health Partners’ staff and board members, we decided to launch a community-wide effort to stem the tide of these tragedies though a community suicide prevention education initiative.
Taking the number 683, which is the total of deaths by suicide in Boulder and Broomfield counties in the years between 2006 and 2016, we set a goal to train six community members for each one of these completed suicides through comprehensive suicide prevention education. Be 1 of 4098 (683×6=4098) initiative was born. We are offering four different courses: QPR (60 minutes), SafeTALK (4 hours), Mental Health First Aid (8 hours) and ASIST (2 days). Each is designed to help participants recognize the “invitations” someone who is contemplating suicide sends out to their community and how to respond and intervene appropriately.
Since official launch on August 23, more than 650 community members have attended one of these courses. To reach all members of the community, we have purposely and deliberately kept costs low.
Nevertheless, there some individuals and organizations in our community where even a small fee is a barrier.
For this reason, MHP is seeking funds for scholarships so that every member of our community—regardless of ability to pay or situation in life—has the opportunity to learn these potentially lifesaving skills.
As you think about your year-end giving and how it could really make a difference, please consider a gift to our “Be 1 of 4098” initiative. A $100 contribution would fund scholarships for 10 community members to take a QPR course. A $500 gift would provide SafeTALK training for 20 area residents. Gifts will also help us work on the use of digital technology in suicide prevention, especially for teens and emerging adults; support additional community conversations and education about suicide prevention; and train a cadre of outstanding educators who can teach these courses, in English and in Spanish, whenever and wherever the interest may be.
Together we can save lives. Thank you in advance in helping make our community suicide-safer.
Best wishes for a happy, healthy and safe holiday season,
Interim Chief Executive Officer
P.S. While our focus is on suicide prevention education this year, unrestricted gifts are also tremendously important to use in client services where there is greatest need. Or, you can earmark your support for any of the specific programs MHP offers including crisis, substance use, the community infant program, older adult services, MESA, Moving Beyond Trauma or others. Please see our website, www.mhpcolorado.org, for a full list of services.