Dozens participate in suicide prevention training - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Dozens participate in suicide prevention training

by Nona Perez

Guam - It's a taboo topic but people on Guam are talking about ways to prevent and cope with suicide. Every two weeks, one death on our island is a result of suicide an alarming statistic that has even members of the island's church community overwhelmed.

"The church is overwhelmed not knowing how to respond to the death, but by ritualizing the life of the person," said Sister Maryann Arroyo. She's participating in this week's Connect Suicide Prevention Program Postvention Training, one of dozens representing a diverse cross section of the island from law enforcement, school leaders, social service groups and community programs.

"It was an en eye opener workshop as to how to address and help our community go through emotional and overwhelming experience of losing a loved one," she said.

The training, sponsored by the Guam Behavioral and Wellness Center, features community educator and prevention specialist Ann Duckless and training and education director Elaine Demello. Both educators admit the island's suicide rates are comparable to American Indians, Hawaiian Natives, and Alaskan natives, but just like these groups, the island is taking action to bring awareness on suicide and reduce the stigma on talking about it and seeking help.

Duckless said, "The strength of this program is promoting, healing and reducing risks at a community level and those two things help with the issue of being able to talk openly when there's been a loss to suicide but also it helps promote healing for the community members to possibly avoid a future suicide incident."

Demello added, "It's creating a very large safety net on the island of Guam where everybody is on the same page where everybody is understanding what best practices are and everybody is using these resources to get help out there to people. There is help 24/7. One number that anyone can call if they're worried about themselves or anyone else is 1-800-273-TALK that's a number that's available anywhere and everywhere."

The Connect Suicide Training rounds out Thursday at Westin Resort. 

  • NEWS HEADLINESMore>>

  • Jon Fernandez's lawsuit dismissed

    Jon Fernandez's lawsuit dismissed

    The $7 million lawsuit Superintendent Jon Fernandez filed in November 2016 against former members of the Guam Education Board was dismissed. The lawsuit was filed after the Guam Education Board terminated Fernandez's contract due to allegations of sexual More >>
    The $7 million lawsuit Superintendent Jon Fernandez filed in November 2016 against former members of the Guam Education Board was dismissed. The lawsuit was filed after the Guam Education Board terminated Fernandez's contract due to allegations of sexual More >>
  • $13M in tax refunds coming Monday

    $13M in tax refunds coming Monday

    The administration announced $13 million in tax refunds will be mailed out on Monday. The 2,700 checks being processed covers those who filed their returns error free by February 4.More >>
    The administration announced $13 million in tax refunds will be mailed out on Monday. The 2,700 checks being processed covers those who filed their returns error free by February 4.More >>
  • Joshua Mesa arrested for meth

    Joshua Mesa arrested for meth

    It wouldn't be the first time he led authorities in a chase. Joshua John Untalan Mesa was arrested and charged in federal court for attempted possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and depredation to government property. Last week the feds iMore >>
    It wouldn't be the first time he led authorities in a chase. Joshua John Untalan Mesa was arrested and charged in federal court for attempted possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and depredation to government property. Last week the feds iMore >>
Powered by Frankly