Patsy Thomas Speech

Good Morning:

I’m Patsy Thomas, CEO of the Community Mental Health Center, and on behalf of the Suicide Prevention Coalition of Dublin-Laurens,

I welcome you and thank each of you for your attendance today.

The purpose of today’s event is to educate our community about the

Coalition and its efforts, to encourage the community to become an active partner in the education/awareness activities of the Coalition, and to promote education and awareness regarding tools, resources, and referral options for people and families who are struggling with issues related to suicide.

Plans for establishing The Suicide Prevention Coalition of Dublin-Laurens began in June 2010, when a small group of community leaders recognized that our community was hurting, and that there was a need to address the issue of suicide prevention for our citizens. The time frame of this discussion was NOT coincidental as the preliminary planning meeting took place following a rash of deaths by suicide in our close-knit community.

We started looking at:

• What we could do to impact and reduce suicide in our community?

• How and where do we start?

• And, what is needed in our community?

Our Mission Statement is: To Provide education, resources, and support for individuals at risk of suicide, to survivors of suicide, and to their families.

The Coalition has met on a monthly basis since August 2010 in an effort to continue to answer these questions, and to seek volunteers to support the efforts of the coalition.

The Coalition would not be effective without the involvement of our community partners and individual citizens who have a sincere dedication to survivors. We are glad that you have taken time from your busy schedules to participate with us today.

Again, I welcome all of you to this Proclamation Signing, Memory Launch, and Suicide Prevention Awareness event; and I encourage you to continue to lend your time, talents, and energies toward this most important of causes as we continue the crucial work of helping our community heal.

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