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September is National Suicide Prevention Month!

September is National Suicide Prevention Month!

September is National Suicide Prevention Month. This month is dedicated to raising awareness about suicide prevention, promoting mental health, and providing support and resources to those who may be struggling with the intention of minimizing the stigma surrounding the topic of suicide and mental health. 

It’s essential to recognize the warning signs of someone who may be planning or thinking about ending their life. Suicide can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, or background. Besides obvious factors like talking about hopelessness, saying they want to kill themselves, etc., there are smaller but still significant language and actions that can indicate a suicidal individual. Such signs might include things like withdrawing, behaving recklessly, talking about being a burden, and excessive use of alcohol or drugs;  are all common ideations of someone at risk of suicide. 

Suicide is preventable. Things like promoting healthy connections, teaching coping skills, and supporting people at risk are strategies that need to be utilized by all levels of our society. If you are met with a loved one, friend, or even a stranger who exhibits suicidal or self-harm tendencies, it is vital to actively listen to their concerns, or even connect them with support systems like family, a trusted adult, or a healthcare provider. Most importantly, be caring and kind to those around you. You never know what is happening behind the scenes. Panthers, let’s all agree to be there for EACH OTHER and to speak up if we know that someone is struggling and needs help.

Suicide is a severe problem with a very prominent presence in our society. There is no change without discussion. If you or someone you love is at risk of suicide, below are links to national and local helplines. 

“988” is the three-digit, nationwide phone number to connect directly to the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. 

“211” is a three-digit, two-way texting application for Tulare County resources, support services, and opportunities. 

“1-800-320-1616” is a 24-hour Mental Health crisis line for Porterville Youth Services.

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Serenity Acuff, Reporter
First-year Orange & Green Staff member Serenity Acuff is a senior at Porterville High. Serenity has been a part of PHS’s Choir for all 4 years, including the Theatre program. Serenity is also the vice president of the Mental Health Club and a member of the S.P.A.R.E club here on campus.

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