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Community Health Network Foundation kicks off year-end effort for youth suicide prevention

For release on November 18, 2015

UPDATE: As of 1/7/2019, the text-for-help hotline may be reached by texting IN to 741741.

Will be focus on Giving Tuesday, includes Matching Challenge from Eli Lilly and Company Foundation

Indianapolis, IN - Community Health Network Foundation recently launched its end-of-year effort geared toward suicide prevention among Hoosier youth and teenagers. The campaign will support Community's Zero Suicide Initiative, the non-profit health system's bold and aspirational goal to achieve a zero percent suicide incident rate among patients in the next ten years.

Indiana has the second highest rate of high school students attempting suicide. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for youth ages 15 to 24, and the third leading cause for youth ages 10 to 14.

As part of the end-of-year campaign, which will include the Foundation’s Giving Tuesday efforts on December 1, the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation has offered a $100,000 Matching Challenge, meaning that every dollar donated on the way to reaching $100,000 will double.

“From now until the end of December, Community Health Network Foundation will focus on supporting the Zero Suicide Initiative and doing all we can to raise awareness of this important cause,” said Bente Weitekamp, Vice President of Development for the Foundation. “With the generosity of Eli Lilly and Company Foundation’s Matching Challenge, the support of Hoosiers and the expertise of Community’s behavioral health team, this effort will help to change and save lives.”

Support received for the Foundation’s year-end effort will further Community’s behavioral health services for youth and teens in the community including:

  • Providing mental health and substance abuse services to students in the school environment in more than 80 sites for Indianapolis Public Schools and the Metropolitan School Districts of Lawrence, Warren, Washington and Wayne townships;
  • Implementing and expanding Community’s suicide prevention and early intervention programs, including its 24-hour toll-free Crisis Line;
  • Training staff and volunteers to detect and assist youth who are at risk; and
  • Continuing the “Text to Help” program, available by texting “HELPNOW” to 20121, so a teen in trouble can communicate with a health services professional who knows how to help.

The announcement was made in the form of a video featuring Kimble Richardson, a licensed mental health counselor at Community Health Network.

“Suicide is a real threat to our kids and teens,” says Richardson in the video. “This is a problem that goes beyond racial, ethnic or religious groups. This is a problem for all of us. And this is what Community’s Zero Suicide Initiative is all about. It’s about every one of us doing everything we can to understand this threat, to create awareness in our schools, communities and families, and to create the tools and programs that will help our kids and teens, as well as everyone around them, know that there is always a better option, and that they are worth every effort we can make.”

The full video is available at http://whatcommunitymeansto.me/2015/zero-suicide/video.php. Visitors to the web page are able to select whether they are a teen, parent or educator and then take a demographic-specific suicide prevention quiz aimed at increasing awareness of this statewide health crisis. Individuals interested in making a donation are encouraged to visit https://give.ecommunity.org/support, call 317-355-GIVE or email give@eCommunity.com.

Community is Central Indiana’s largest provider of behavioral health services. This announcement follows the recent launch of Community's web resource, www.HaveHope.com, which provides suicide prevention resources for teens, parents and teachers. 

About Community Health Network Foundation
Community Health Network Foundation is the not-for-profit philanthropic organization of Community Health Network, Central Indiana’s leader in providing convenient access to exceptional healthcare services, where and when patients need them. Donations support patients, caregivers and Central Indiana communities. For more information, visit eCommunity.com/foundation or call 317-355-GIVE.

Bridget Cleveland, Development Communications Coordinator, Community Health Network Foundation
Bridget Cleveland
Development Communications Coordinator, Community Health Network Foundation