Suicide Prevention Day

Before the walk, a moment of silence was held at 8 p.m. in memory of those lost to suicide. This was one of many such ceremonies held for World Suicide Prevention Day.

The Suicide Awareness and Prevention Office hosted the third annual “Not Another Aggie” walk on Tuesday night.

Starting at 7 p.m. in Rudder Plaza, the event featured informational booths, free t-shirts and food and interactive displays.

Before the walk began, suicide survivors shared their stories of finding hope, and a candle lighting ceremony at 8 p.m. honored those who have lost their lives and those who are still struggling. This candle lighting cermony was one of many held across the globe in recognition of World Suicide Prevention day.

Santana Simple, assistant director for the Suicide Awareness and Prevention Office, said the walk was a way for people to show their support for those suffering and give them the opportunity to seek out help and use the resources provided by the university.

“My goal for this walk is for people to have a place where they can look around and see that there are people who care,” Simple said. “Support is here and they never have to feel alone.”

The walk began at 8:15 p.m. and participants walked around campus together, following the signs that marked their path, as a sign of support for those suffering.

The event was staffed with volunteer students, faculty and community members from the Bryan-College Station area. Psychology senior and volunteer Sydney Stevens was stationed at a booth representing HelpLine — a mental health service that students can contact for support on nights and weekends. She said that while speaking about suicide can make for a difficult discussion, it is one that needs to happen.

“It’s really important to raise awareness because it’s not talked about enough,” Stevens said. “Suicide is a hard topic and people don’t want to talk about it, but they should.”

Before the walk began, several suicide survivors shared their stories. Survivor and economics senior Natalia Suarez said that getting help is possible, and the fight is worth it.

“I struggled a lot, but I’ve come full circle,” Suarez said. “I want to be the person I wish I had. Everyone tells you it gets better, but it’s so different coming from someone who has been through it and made it to the other side.”

To find information on campus counseling resources or schedule an appointment, students can visit Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) online or on campus at White Creek. CAPS can be contacted by phone at 979-845-4427 during business hours. HelpLine can be contacted at 979-845-2700 from 4 p.m. to 8 a.m. on weekdays and 24 hours a day on weekends.

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