September 7th through the 15th has been designated as National Suicide Prevention Week and Project Tomorrow is presenting a series of events to help bring hope to the difficult subject of suicide.

CEO of Missoula United Way, Susan Hay Patrick said the effort will begin during First Friday.

“Local artist Marlo Crocifisso will unveil her new mural on the downtown wall in the alley between the Red Bird and the Catalyst Restaurant,” she began. “Then, at the Griz game on Saturday we will be ‘leafletting’ distributing flyers about mental health issues and suicide awareness. The mayor will proclaim Suicide Prevention Week at Monday night’s city council meeting.”

There will be workshops and presentations throughout the week, along with special music performances.

“David Simmons, who is the son of Don and Pat Simmons and brother of Academy Award winning actor J.K. Simmons has a band and he will be performing,” she said. “Davis is also a suicide survivor, and has devoted his life to spreading the message of health and hope, especially to young people at risk of suicide. He’s doing a workshop at Williard High School giving students the chance to tell their stories through music.”

Saturday, Hays Patrick said there will be an ‘Out of the Darkness’ walk at Silver Park.

“It’s an annual walk where people individually or in teams will raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention through walking,” she said.

According to the Montana Department of Health and Human Services, in the past ten years (2005-2014), the crude rate of suicide in Montana is 22.33 per 100,000 people (the national rate during that period is 12.22 per 100,000). Between 2005 and 2014, 2,199 Montana residents have died by suicide for an average of 220 people per year.

A full schedule of events for Suicide Prevention Week can be found by clicking here.

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