Summit County unites for Survivor Day | SummitDaily.com

Summit County unites for Survivor Day

You are not alone.

That was the message from Kellyn Glynn at Survivor Day on Saturday. Glynn is a licensed professional counselor and Healthy Futures program coordinator for Youth And Family Services for Summit County. She told the small group that attended the event that she honored them for taking the steps to make it there.

Survivor Day was started by an act of the United States Congress in 1999. It is a day when the loved ones of someone who died by suicide can come together for support. Since it started 17 years ago, the day has become an international movement, spurred by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Glynn said that more than 350 events were being held worldwide.

The event started with a viewing of "Life Journeys: Reclaiming Life After Loss." The film is the third part of a trilogy of "Journey" films created by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. The film tells the story of the grieving process for several long-term loss survivors, and how that process can be different for everyone.

Discussions after the film ranged from personal reactions to recognizing the same symptoms in the attendants' own grieving process.

Tim Casey, the husband of Patti Casey who passed in January said that for his family it was important for them to tell the story of Patti Casey's suicide. Once they took that step, the next step was to do something about it.

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Tim Casey and his two daughters started the Patti Casey Memorial Fund in her honor, and have been working with the county and other suicide prevention organizations throughout Summit. Tim Casey worried that the suicide rate in Summit County was one of the highest in Colorado, a state that already ranks sixth in the nation for suicide rates according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Tim Casey said that there are lots of resources in the county, and part of his mission is to help pool their efforts.

The Survivor Day event is the first step in a new initiative by Summit County to begin reaching out to those affected by suicide and taking more preventative measures. Building Hope Summit County came from the Patti Casey Memorial Fund, and has partners in both statewide suicide prevention organizations, as well as local philanthropists.

Gini Bradley, who is working with the memorial fund, said that when she first started she wanted to ensure that the organization would receive backing from not only the community, but local entities as well. She added that the organization is about action and making sure there is support for a community in need.

"People have been so incredibly supportive," she said. "It's easier for people to join in when we're doing something."

In addition to the healthy futures initiative, the memorial fund is partnering with St. Anthony Summit Medical Center, the Summit School District, The Summit Foundation, Breckenridge Grand Vacations, as well as the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Building Hope will host events throughout the rest of November and December to help create a sense of togetherness and education for the community.

The theme for this event was recognizing that although grief makes you feel like you have been isolated, it is simply not the case.

"Nobody should have to do it alone," Glynn said.

She added that reaching out to people is one of the first steps in helping someone affected by loss.

"More people need (resources), than we realize need it," she said.

Resources

Summit County Community Care Clinic: summitclinic.org, (970) 668-4040

Mind Springs Health: mindspringshealth.org, (970) 668-3478

Advocates for Victims Assault: summitadvocates.org, (970) 668-3906

St Anthony Summit Medical Center: summitmedicalcenter.org, (970) 668-3300

Colorado Crisis Services: coloradocrisisservices.org, 1-844-493-TALK (8255)

Suicide Prevention Coalition of Colorado: suicidepreventioncolorado.org, (720) 934-2387

Safe to Tell: safetotell.org, 1-877-542-7233

Upcoming Events

“Hope Begins With You,” suicide prevention training and dinner Nov. 30, 5-7 p.m. St. Anthony Medical Center, Classroom 340

Yoga for mental health and suicide awareness, Dec. 5, 7-8:30 p.m. Breckenridge Grand Vacations Community Center, Hopefull & Discovery Room

“In Your Own Voice,” presentation and dinner, Dec. 8, 6-8 p.m. St. Anthony Medical Center, Classroom 340

Holiday Craft Night, Dec. 15, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Summit County Community and Senior Center

Peace in Holiday Chaos, Dec. 20, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Breckenridge Grand Vacations Community Center, Hopefull & Discovery Room

Yoga for mental health and suicide awareness, Dec. 28, 7-8:30 p.m. Meta Yoga Studios 118 S. Ridge St., Breckenridge

For more info visit facebook.com/buildinghopesummitcounty