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During National Suicide Prevention Month, Make a Difference in Someone’s Life Even If You’re Not a Mental Health Expert

This article first appeared in the Vail Daily on August 29, 2020.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, call The Hope Center of the Eagle Valley at 970-306-HOPE (4673) or Colorado Crisis Services at 844-493-8255.

If there is one thing SpeakUp ReachOut would like you to know during the month of September, it is that you do not have to be a mental health professional to make a difference in someone’s life. September is National Suicide Prevention Month and SpeakUp ReachOut is offering 13 free trainings and events throughout the month for community members to get involved and learn how to provide hope to someone in need.

Approximately 80% of all people who die by suicide are of working age (18-65) making the workplace the most cross-cutting system for suicide prevention, intervention and crisis response. Workplace suicide prevention is more than just offering an employee assistance program. SpeakUp Reach Out will offer a free Zoom workshop on Sept. 2 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. — Suicide Prevention in the Workplace — to provide information on what organizations can do to be on the cutting edge. National suicide prevention expert Dr. Sally Spencer Thomas will lead this training.

“Through the generous support of Eagle Valley Behavioral Health, we are able to elevate our events to include national speakers which offers new and different lenses about the tough topic of suicide prevention and loss,” said Erin Ivie, executive director of SpeakUp ReachOut. “The workplace workshop introduces the new national guidelines for workplace suicide prevention and offers tangible tools to implement in your workplace. I encourage our community to embrace this free offering and learn more about how to save a life through suicide safer workplaces.”

Another upcoming event featuring a national speaker is SpeakUp ReachOut’s annual Community Walk and Memorial Butterfly Launch on Sept. 12 at 8:30 a.m. at Freedom Park in Edwards. Anne Moss Rogers, an expert in mental health, suicide prevention and grief, will present  “How To Turn Pain Into Purpose” and share her story of the loss of her teenage son’s death by suicide and how to support those who are suffering from the loss of a loved one to suicide. This event will also feature a Benediction ceremony led by Molly Fiore Booker to honor those we have lost to suicide.

“Many people are experiencing loss right now due to COVID-19,” said Carol Johnson, SpeakUp ReachOut’s director of programs and events. “Loss of routine and loss of our normal way of life is a very real struggle and a common reaction to trauma. Join us and Anne Rogers for our annual Walk as we provide much-needed community connection to overcome loss.”

For the full list of SpeakUp ReachOut upcoming trainings in English and Spanish, visit

SpeakUp ReachOut, founded in 2009, exists to prevent suicide prevention in the Eagle River Valley through training, awareness and hope. Visit to learn more.

SpeakUp ReachOut Events in September

SpeakUp ReachOut requests that participants register using the following links for each individual event.

  • September 1 | Hope Hour in English! at Benderz in Avon
  • September 2 | Workplace Suicide Prevention
  • September 3 | SURO will be featured in a EVBH Virtual Town Hall: Prevention and Education
  • September 3 | Yoga Gratis Para La Salud Mental – Clase En Españo*
  • September 10 | SURO Coalition Update with Total Health Alliance
  • September 12 | Annual Community Walk and Butterfly Launch with Ann Moss Rogers
  • September 15 | Hope Hour in Spanish! at Garduno’s in Eagle*
  • September 16 | Eagle County Survivors of Suicide Loss Group starts for 6 weeks
  • September 17 | Men’s Group – Fight Club Yoga
  • September 18-19 | ASIST – Location TBA
  • September 26 | MHFA in person in Spanish – St. Mary’s Church*
  • September 29 | Youth Mental Health First Aid – Virtual via Zoom
  • September 30 | The Upstanders Documentary – Virtual Screening via Zoom

For Spanish events, contact

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