FSU Panama City to host Suicide Awareness Summit 2022: Colored in Hope

Raemi Creteur

On Friday, Sept. 9, 2022, Florida State University Panama City will host the Suicide Awareness Summit 2022: Colored in Hope to educate the community on ways to reduce risk factors and increase protective factors associated with suicide rates.

Coinciding with National Suicide Prevention month in September, the event will be live at Florida State University Panama City in the St. Joe Community Foundation Lecture Hall at the Holley Academic Center with a virtual option available via Zoom: https://fsu.zoom.us/j/97553737992. The event spans from 9 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. with check-in beginning at 8:30 a.m.

According to the CDC, suicide is a leading cause of death in the United States. The Florida Department of Health website, floridahealth.gov, states that Bay County has a 25% higher rate of suicide than the Florida average.

In partnership with the National Association of Social Workers Emerald Coast Unit, attending mental health professionals will receive 2.5 Continuing Education credits at no cost. A keynote address regarding risk factors and protective factors for suicide will be delivered by Nova Southeastern University’s Scott Poland, EdD. Participants can expect to learn more about how they can serve their patients with the goal of lowering the rate of suicide in Bay County.

Additional activities will include “You’re Not Alone,” a 2019 PBS documentary about kids in crisis and a resource panel featuring the Mobile Response Team; Life Management Center; Bryana Villalobos, MS, adolescent therapist at Emerald Coast Behavioral Hospital; Ken Chisholm, LCSW, with Bay County Schools; Emily Gray, transgender outreach coordinator at the LGBTQ+ Center of Bay County and fire captain/EMT; Matt Standish, outreach coordinator at the Vet Center; Rachael Smith, nurse practitioner at Journey Pure; and FSU PC faculty member Denise Montford, ACSW, LCSW, who is the executive director and co-founder of Angel House Bereavement Center.

To learn more about the Suicide Awareness Summit 2022: Colored in Hope, and to RSVP, check the Eventbrite link: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/suicide-awareness-summit-2022-tickets-358494816647