This will be the second year that I am joining my brothers and sisters in Long Island for a cause that really matters. The loss of a loved one to suicide has to be one of the most painful tragedies imaginable. Many who have lost someone this way have turned that pain into something positive and hopeful by participating in and leading events to raise awareness about suicide. I am writing to you today about one of these events: The Long Island Crisis Center’s “Walk to Prevent Suicide.” I was particularly moved last year seeing the many teenagers holding large signs with pictures of friends they had lost. For these young people, this walk is therapeutic and gives them the chance to honor their friends. They were extremely appreciative to see so many teachers joining them at this event.
In our various work places, NYSUT members encounter students, colleagues and parents who have been touched by suicide. For that reason, I ask you to please join me as I walk again this year with the Long Island Crisis Center as we step together to prevent suicide. The walk will take place on Sunday September 30, 2012 on the Long Beach Boardwalk at Riverside Blvd. Registration begins at 11am and the walk at 12 noon. The Long Island Crisis Center (LICC), is a not-for-profit private agency, established in 1971 and has existed since then as a 24 hour a day/7 days a week/365 days a year suicide prevention and crisis intervention hotline. In 2011 volunteer counselors responded to more than 10,000 calls on its hotlines, on-line (interactive and live) chat site and drop- in counseling. All services are free, confidential and anonymous.
I encourage locals to walk together with their NYSUT banner and I encourage you to bring family members and friends. I also encourage walkers to gather sponsors as this is an important fundraising event for the LI Crises Center. I would ask that you share this email with all of your members in hopes that NYSUT’s impressive turnout will send a loud message to the Long Island Community about how much we care and how much we are invested in eradicating suicide.
For more information and to register, please visit http://www.longislandcrisiscenter.org/
I really do look forward to seeing you at this important event on September 30, 2012.