Suicide Prevention Week: ‘Out of the Darkness’ walk set for this Sunday

Out of the Darkness is a national suicide awareness and prevention campaign organized by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. — photo by Lily Childs

Iowa City’s 5th annual Out of the Darkness Walk, a 5k meant to raise awareness and support those affected by suicide, will take place this Sunday, Sept. 14 from 6-8 p.m. at the Terry Trueblood Recreation Area (4213 SE Sand Road).

The walk is hosted by the Johnson County Suicide Prevention Coalition as part of Suicide Prevention Week (Sept. 8-14). Participants include those who have struggled personally with suicide or mental illness, supporters of struggling friends or families and those who are passionate about mental health education, though all are welcome to attend.

In addition to the 5k walk, there will be live music by Dan Dimonte as well as a memory board for people to display pictures of those lost to suicide.

Half of the funds raised this Sunday will be used to support local suicide survivors and suicide awareness programs. AFSP will use the remainder of the funds for suicide prevention research, depression awareness campaigns and educational programs about the warning signs and psychiatric illnesses that can lead to suicide.

Previous walks have raised $10,000 – $17,000 with about 150 participants, on average. This year, organizers have set a goal of $15,000.

To register for the walk, visit AFSP’s sign-up page and select “The Crisis Center” as your team, or register in-person at the event. Day-of registration begins at 5 p.m.

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