Valdosta suicide prevention 5k run spreads awareness
ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - The statistics have gotten grimmer when it comes to families being impacted by suicide.
Saturday United 2 prevent, a Valdosta organization, hosted its first suicide prevention 5K run to help spread awareness and raise money for suicide prevention resources.
“This is a pain that no one should have to endure but unfortunately people are doing it every day,” said Terri Walker, a 5K runner.
Walker has been directly impacted by suicide as her daughter Sydni took her life seven years ago. Now, Walker shares her daughter’s story with the community to stop the number of suicide deaths from rising.
“Imagine how many other broken hearts because of these names. There’s 10, there’s 20, there’s 30 people and family members that are struggling. Their hearts are shattered. Their world is broken because their child or person’s name is up here and we want to end that,” she said.
Approximately 1.2 million Americans attempt suicide annually in the U.S. and that number is growing, According to 2020 stats from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Center.
It’s because of that fact that the 5K run raised over $30,000 Saturday. All the proceeds will go toward suicide prevention resources such as the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).
Many of the other runners at the event said more resources are needed right now in their city.
“When people say it takes a village to raise a child, it’s really so true. Teenagers today are in a lot of pressure,” AnnMaria Horst, a 5K runner said.
Some younger runners also laced up their running shoes for the cause. They said they were proud to participate in something that impacts their generation.
“As I ran this race, I thought about people that have committed suicide and I started running faster. It’s very sad for the families that have to go through that,” said Regan Davis, a 7th grader at Citizens Christian Academy.
If you or someone you know is experiencing thoughts of suicide, please call the suicide and crisis lifeline at 988.
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