Ohlone College in Fremont helps walk "Out of Darkness" - Article, Office of College Advancement

Thursday, May 2, 2013—Reprinted from Mercury News: Fremont Bulletin.

By Fremont Bulletin Staff.

The Greater San Francisco Bay Area Chapter for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention sponsored Ohlone College's third annual Out of the Darkness Campus Walk April 23.

Approximately 96 people participated in the three- to five-mile walk that has raised awareness and $4,081 for the cause, according to the drive's website. The event was one of many campus walks taking place in communities across the country, with proceeds benefiting the foundation's research and education programs to prevent suicide and save lives, increase national awareness about depression and suicide, and provide support for survivors of suicide loss.

Four walkers hold the Out of the Darkness banner.

During the walk, there was also a health fair compromised of community-based organizations who are involved with treatment and support of those suffering from mental illness.

Doves are released at Ohlone's Out of the Darkness Campus Walk event.The event first began at Ohlone in April 2011, after the loss of Ohlone campus security guard Stewart Dawson. He took his life Dec. 28, 2010.

Jimmy Dempsey, owner of birds and an Ohlone facilities employee, arranged the release of doves during the event as his way to remember Dawson. They shared a love of birds and Dawson often discussed the different species he had been photographing while coming across them on campus.

Walk donations are being accepted until June 30 at afsp.donordrive.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.event&eventID=2061. For more information about mental health services provided at Ohlone, visit stepupohlone.org.

Suicide warning signs

Seek help as soon as possible by contacting a mental health professional or calling the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1 (800) 273-TALK (8255) if you or someone you know exhibits any of the following signs:

  • Threatening to hurt or kill oneself or talking about wanting to hurt or kill oneself
  • Looking for ways to kill oneself by seeking access to firearms, available pills or other means
  • Talking or writing about death, dying or suicide when these actions are out of the ordinary for the person
  • Feeling hopeless
  • Feeling rage or uncontrolled anger or seeking revenge
  • Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities, seemingly without thinking
  • Feeling trapped, like there's no way out
  • Increasing alcohol or drug use
  • Withdrawing from friends, family and society
  • Feeling anxious, agitated or unable to sleep or sleeping all the time
  • Experiencing dramatic mood changes
  • Seeing no reason for living or having no sense of purpose in life.

–American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

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