Carlton’s 15th Annual Suicide Awareness Memorial Walk
Residents in Carlton held the 15th Annual Suicide Awareness Memorial Walk. People could make connections and learn about mental health resources in the Northland to help people struggling.
Jo Angell, an organizer of the event and mother who lost her son Doug said spreading awareness is crucial. Many people might still be facing trouble in their time of mourning of their friend or family member they lost to suicide.
“I think the support network has gotten so much stronger. When we lost Doug, there was not a lot of support. Suicide was more of a stigma,” Angell said. “Over the years, due to this task force and the walk, it has brought so much more awareness and help to people out there.”
The Suicide Awareness Memorial Walk is organized by members of the Carlton County Suicide Prevention Task Force. It first started back in 2008, but over the last decade and a half its grown stronger.
“This is our 15th walk,” Angell said. “We started out with maybe 75 people the first year, and it’s grown tremendously over the years and just been such a good support network for everyone.”
Angell said there are several support groups in the Northland people can reach out to for overcoming their grief. Some of the organizations at the Suicide Awareness Memorial Walk were Arrowhead Behavioral Health Initiative, and the Birch Tree Center.
Meghann Levitt with the Carlton County Public Heath and Human Services said the walk can help people silently struggling with their mental health.
“Grief is a really hard thing because there isn’t a lot of closure,” Levitt said. “A space where people can come and just be with others who understand that type of loss is really an important environment to provide for people. We know that there could be people here today that are struggling. And so we always refer people to either local mobile crisis or the 988 nationals Suicide and crisis Lifeline.”
One of the other community resources for helping people struggling with mental health is Amberwing. It’s a center for youth and family well-being created by the Miller-Dwan Foundation. For other stories about suicide awareness you can read more here.