Welcome letter from the Arkansas Chair

A welcome letter from Christopher Epperson, Chair of the Arkansas AFSP Chapter.

Thank you for visiting the Arkansas Chapter website of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). I realize that you are probably visiting this website due to the loss of a friend or loved one, and should that be the case, I am truly sorry. I understand what you are going through.

The Arkansas Chapter of AFSP is dedicated to understanding and preventing suicide through research, education and advocacy, and to reaching out to people with mental disorders and those impacted by suicide.

Since our first Out of the Darkness (OOTD) community walk in Little Rock in 2008, our chapter has been dedicated to raising the funds needed to better understand and prevent suicide through research and education, and to reach out to people with mood disorders and those affected by suicide. We were recognized at the National level in 2010 with the Advocacy Award, 2011 as the Chapter of the Year in our division and in 2013 as the “Most Improved Chapter” because of the wonderful volunteers and board members in Arkansas.

The University of Central Arkansas has also gained national recognition with the success of their Out of the Darkness Campus Walks, ranking 2nd in the country for revenue raised in 2011 and 4th highest in 2012 (which brings awareness on campus). As well as Arkansas Tech University holding their first (OODW) campus walk in April 2014 which was a great success.

In 2012 we were able to use funds raised through our walks to provide suicide prevention DVD’s to every public high school in our state at no charge. In 2013, we are expanding our survivor outreach efforts so that more families affected by suicide can receive the support they need in a timely manner to find hope and healing after their tragic loss.

2014, we were able to provide a copies of  “After A Suicide: A Toolkit for Schools” and “Model School District Policy on Suicide Prevention” to all public Jr. high, middle and high schools in the state of Arkansas.

One of the major initiatives for 2014-2015 is to reach out to the outlying communities in our state and expand training, resources and support, so one day, Arkansas will be with out suicide.

We are a new chapter and need your help to expand across the state. Please review the links on the side of the page for more information about the Arkansas chapter and its resources, the Out of the Darkness walks, and learn how you can get involved.

If you happen to be visiting this website because you are dealing with issues of your own, please seek medical help or call1-800-273-TALK (8255), and know you are loved and cared about by your friends and family.

 

Sincerely,

Christopher Epperson