The Suicide Prevention Awareness & Resource Council (SPARC) is a group of concerned citizens, professionals, and partner agencies who convene with a common goal of reducing the number of suicides in our area. We work collaboratively to strengthen and expand education in the area of suicide prevention, behavioral health and wellness. Our goal is to increase help seeking behaviors and raise awareness about available mental health (MH) supports and resources in our area. Data drives our chosen initiatives, which are designed to address our area’s specific demographic needs. Region Ten’s Suicide prevention logic model drives SPARC initiatives. SPARC members have also agreed to support and staff a local suicide prevention awareness walk each year. The event will begin on October 16th and continue through October 30th. The primary fund raiser of the group is anticipated to be the SPARC Hope walk each year.
Other initiatives, as outlined in the logic model, include distribution of suicide prevention materials, tabling events, trainings, community events and support of other health and wellness initiatives. We anticipate being dynamically responsive to our community in this arena. Based on our logic model and community need we have been given funds by DBHDS for specific initiatives related to our suicide prevention strategies. Our regional suicide prevention program also allocates funds each year toward our national suicide prevention week activities, slated for each September.
Committee members include Region ten staff (each locale is represented), Virginia Department of Health representatives, local police, community members, Mental Health America staff, faith-based community members, and our regional Suicide prevention coordinator.