Academic institutions are banding together in support of the national “Not on My Watch” campaign to prevent deaths by suicide among college students. Suicide Prevention Week will take place from September 8 – 14, 2013 in San Diego County.
University of San Diego is joining the Suicide Prevention Council, convened by Community Health Improvement Partners (CHIP) and participants in its Higher Education Subcommittee to host a myriad of education, awareness and prevention activities at area colleges and universities in order to reduce suicide among student populations.
The Suicide Prevention Resource Center specifies that there are an estimated 1,100 students affiliated with colleges and universities across the country that die by suicide each year, and participating colleges and universities locally like the University of California at San Diego, the University of San Diego, San Diego State University, San Diego City College, Mira Costa College, California State University at San Marcos and Grossmont College want to send this prevention-campaign message to their respective student populations so that they are aware that there are quality resources available to students experiencing mental health problems associated with suicide.
On September 6, County Supervisor Ron Roberts and Health and Human Services Agency Director Nick Macchione will kick-off Suicide Prevention Week at a “Not on My Watch” event at San Diego State University. While a variety of activities will take place over a one-week period, the San Diego County Suicide Prevention Council would like to highlight a series of events occurring Tuesday, September 10, 2013. Activities occurring on Tuesday among participating college campuses and universities will range from noon-time table events/leaf-letting activities to special education workshops and community health resources fairs. At these activities they will be passing out “Not On My Watch” kits that consist of wristband with the slogan on one side and the Access and Crisis Line on the other and additional resources, these kits were first created and used by Community Research Foundation and this year we are joining them to say “Not On My Watch.”
Beginning on September 10 and continuing throughout the academic year, USD will be offering opportunities for our community to come together and help those struggling with mental health concerns including anxiety, depression and suicidality.
USD will launch its campus wide efforts on Tuesday, September 10 at the Alcala Bazaar and continue with “USD Not on my Watch” week October 14-18, 2013. The week will conclude with USD students, faculty and staff by joining the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s “Out of Darkness Community Walk“ on October 19. In November, USD Student Wellness is co-sponsoring International Survivors of Suicide Day at on November 23. More details will become available as they events draw near.
For more information on suicide awareness and prevention as well as upcoming events, please visit www.sandiego.edu/notonmywatch.
— Melissa Wagoner